France - decree signed, graphic warnings on cigarette packs next year..

April 26, 2010 - SHOCK images (graphic warnings) are to begin appearing on cigarette packets in France next year, more than two years after the idea was first proposed.

Health Minister Roselyne Bachelot said she had signed the decree that will force cigarette manufacturers to show pictures of the damage smoking does to the body.

One of 14 images will take up 40% of the space on the back of every packet sold in France, with messages such as "Smokers die early" and "Smoking causes deadly lung cancer".

Anti-smoking groups have been calling for the shock tactics for several years. Producers and tobacconists have a year to use up their existing stocks.

Ms Bachelot said she was "favourable" to the idea in October 2008 after a study by the University of Rennes showed that the method was an efficient way of reducing the amount of cigarettes sold. (The use of visual warnings in social marketing: The case of tobaccoKarine Gallopel-Morvan et al. Journal of Business Research, 2009.)

Reference: Cigarette shock pics confirmed,, 4/19/2010.

France - a few related news briefs:
France - number of cigarettes sold starts to rise again..;
France - anti-smoking shock ad aimed at teens..;
France - some smokers are flaunting the ban on smoking..;
Cigarette sales in France dropped to a record low in 2008..;
French researchers announced a striking 15% decrease in admissions of patients with myocardial infarction to emergency wards since the public ban on smoking came into effect..;
France - cheaper cigarettes close by in Belgium...