Plain packaging

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Despite assurances from Minister for Trade and Investment Andrew Robb, the TPP could negatively affect Australian health policy. Dan Himbrechts/AAP

Leaked TPP investment chapter shows risks to Australia’s health

The latest part of the TPP to be leaked is its investment chapter. And like almost everything we know about the secretive negotiations for the agreement, it provides plenty of cause for concern.
The tobacco industry warned smokers would use special covers to conceal the large-scale graphic warnings on packs. This hasn’t happened. Lucas Cock/AAP

Cluster bomb of new research explodes tobacco industry lies about plain packs

There is near-universal agreement that Australia’s implementation of tobacco plain packaging in December 2012 has seen the most virulent opposition ever experienced from the global tobacco industry.
Just 12.8% of Australians over the age of 14 are now smoking on a daily basis. Flickr: noahvoelker

Plain packs help deter young smokers as uptake drops to new low

Evidence is mounting that plain cigarette packaging is helping prevent young people from becoming addicted, life-long customers of big tobacco. From January 2012, all tobacco products have been sold in…
Boarded up: how companies are trumping our health. Eschipul

Beware, secret trade deals can seriously damage your health

If I asked you to name some of the current threats to your health, “international trade law” probably wouldn’t be on the tip of your tongue. Yet trade agreements, and the way we negotiate them, can affect…
Not so cool. Nick Perry/AP/PA

Tobacco companies are savvy about the power of branding

In 1952 the first paper was published linking smoking with death. About 50 years later governments around the world started to ban smoking advertising from TV, billboards and sporting venues. Then, eventually…
Tobacco use causes more than five million deaths every year across the world. MilitaryHealth/Flickr

Medical journals refuse to publish tobacco-funded research

Editors of journals published by the BMJ Group will no longer consider publishing research that is partly or wholly funded…
Tobacco kills at least half of users - lobbyists are smaller fry. Brittany Perry

I have more faith in people than tobacco lobbyists

I recently interviewed Nicola Roxon, the former minister responsible for cleaning up Australia’s public health policy through legislation on standardised tobacco packaging. It shed some light on how public…
The tobacco industry has stated publicly that it’s helping countries bring claims against Australia’s tobacco plain packaging law. LUKAS COCH/AAP

Australia’s plain tobacco packaging law at the WTO

Earlier this month, Cuba became the fourth country to challenge Australia’s plain tobacco packaging law by requesting consultations with Australia through the World Trade Organization (WTO). Tobacco companies…
Big Tobacco’s planners eye their world maps and salivate over large, poorly educated populations. Image from shutterstock.com

Big Tobacco losing ground on plain packs but homing in on world’s poor

Plain packing has been a reality for Big Tobacco in Australia for three months now; New Zealand announced last week it will follow suit; and at least four other nations, including India, are also considering…
Obesity, over-diagnosis, the NDIS, vaccinations and open access for genetic information were just some of the issues covered in 2012. Kylie May; shutterstock.com; Morberg; Pranjal Mahn

2012, the year that was: Health + Medicine

It promised to be a full year of reforms: pokies legislation, front-of-pack food labels and a dental system that doesn’t cost those in need an arm and a leg. But while we did see cigarette companies forced…
The High Court decision is not a quirk of Antipodean constitutional law, as alleged by British American Tobacco. AAP

The High Court and the Marlboro Man: the plain packaging decision

The High Court of Australia’s ruling on the plain packaging of tobacco products is one of the great constitutional cases of our age. The ruling will resonate throughout the world - as other countries will…
Sweden is ahead of many nations in anti-smoking efforts but it’s not at the head of the class. Jess Pac

My complacent country: why Sweden has long way to go on tobacco reform

In general, Swedes tend to have a good self-image. Not necessarily of ourselves as individuals but of Sweden and Swedes as a whole. The general view is that we are more democratic, liberal, rational, equal…

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