Every Canadian cigarette will soon carry a health warning

Canada will soon print warning labels directly on cigarettes in a world-first, the country’s health agency announced.

New packaging will feature a warning on each cigarette with phrases like: “Cigarettes cause cancer” and “Poison in every puff”.

The regulation will come into effect on 1 August, Health Canada said.

It is part of an effort to reduce tobacco use in Canada to less than 5% by 2035.

In an announcement on Wednesday, Health Canada said the new regulations “will make it virtually impossible to avoid health warnings” on tobacco products.

The health agency anticipates that by April 2025, retailers in Canada will only carry tobacco products that feature the new warning labels directly on the cigarettes.

Products that will have labels on tipping paper include individual cigarettes, little cigars, tubes and other tobacco products, Health Canada said.

The move follows a 75-day public consultation period that was launched last year.

Warning labels are already printed on cigarette package covers. Health Canada said it plans to expand on those by printing additional warning labels inside the packages themselves, and introducing a new external warning messages.

In a statement, Canada’s minister of mental health and addictions, Carolyn Bennett, said tobacco use kills around 48,000 Canadians each year.

“We are taking action by being the first country in the world to label individual cigarettes with health warning messages,” Ms Bennett said, calling the change a “bold step”.

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