December 8, 2010 - After more than six years of study, design and focus groups, the federal government has halted its plan to require tobacco companies to update the warnings on the side of cigarette packages with larger and more grotesque images.
Health Canada told provinces and territories attending a closed-door meeting in Newfoundland two weeks ago that its tobacco strategy will instead concentrate on the problem of contraband cigarettes, an issue that has been highlighted by the tobacco industry.
September 28, 2010 - Canada - Health Canada shelves update of graphic warning messages to concentrate on the problem of contraband tobacco..)
August 15, 2010 - Health Canada - why delay in new round of cigarette pack pictorial warnings??
September 3, 2009 - Graphic Warnings cigarette packs: Canada revising warnings, U.S. pictorial warnings within 4-years..
Development of new labels - according to a document from Health Canada detailing the total estimated expenditures reveals that the ministry spent $3.15 million on public opinion research, contracts and other miscellaneous expenses. The government also spent $496,000 to develop a national Quitline, a 1-800 number that would appear on cigarette packages.
The new labels were supposed to increase in size from 50 per cent to 75 per cent of each cigarette package.
In 2000, Canada became the first country to put graphic warning labels on cigarette packages. In the years since, many other countries, including Uruguay and Mexico, have brought in warnings that are far more graphic and disturbing than Canada’s — and cover up to 80 per cent of the package. "The problem with Canada … is that we’ve had the same warnings on packs for almost 10 years now," said Dave Hammond, a professor at the University of Waterloo who consulted for Health Canada on the development of the new labels. "We’ve fallen off the pace. What were once the best warnings in the world are now looking stale and very old. "We don’t run the same TV advertisement for 10 years," said Hammond. "Nor should you have the same health warning for 10 years."
Canada's graphic health warnings..
Reference: Nixed cigarette labels revamp cost millions by Nicholas Stein, CBC News, 12/7/2010.