20 May 2016 marks the coming into force of EUTPD II and standardised packaging legislation.
From today, tobacco manufacturers are only allowed to produce products that comply with the new regulations. This includes no longer being able to manufacture cigarette packs containing less than twenty sticks, roll-your-own tobacco pouches under 30g or packaging featuring price marked packs.
It also means the final, year-long countdown to 20 May 2017 has begun. After this date retailers will only be allowed to sell standardised packs which comply with EUTPD II.
The Government published the final Tobacco and Related Products Regulations on 22 April. They must be passed into law by the EUTPD II implementation date of 20 May 2016, a process which is currently ongoing. The regulations set out how the Government intends to implement EUTPD II in the UK.
Yesterday, on 19 May, the High Court ruled that the tobacco industry had been unsuccessful in its legal challenge to the Standardised Packaging of Tobacco Products Regulations in the UK.
Duncan Cunningham, Imperial Tobacco UK and Ireland’s Head of Corporate and Legal Affairs, comments: “Clearly, we are disappointed with yesterday’s decision, as we believe our legal arguments are strong. It will take some time to digest the substance of the decision in full and then decide as to whether there are appropriate grounds for appeal or not.
“However, as a responsible business, our focus remains on ensuring the success of our customers through the supply of compliant products. While the new regulations affect pack sizes and branding, today’s initial deadline principally affects tobacco manufacturers. Retailers will still be able to sell current formats until 20 May 2017 – an entire year from now.
“Tobacco pricing plays a critical role in the independent trade, and our experiences in Australia – which introduced standardised packaging in 2012 – suggest retailers who plan and prepare for change will be putting themselves in the strongest position to transition successfully.
“In the UK, we are working with the trade through our ‘Partnering for Success’ initiative to ensure the independent trade remains both compliant and competitive now the new regulations have come into force.”
Retailers can watch our Partnering for Success videos, download the digital versions of START packs and find out more about how the regulations could affect their businesses on our UK trade website, www.imperial-trade.co.uk, and our dedicated website for ignite members, www.imperial-ignite.co.uk, or by talking to their Imperial Tobacco sales representative.
About Imperial Tobacco Limited
Imperial Tobacco Limited is the largest tobacco manufacturer in the United Kingdom, headquartered in Bristol, England. Our product portfolio includes leading tobacco brands Lambert & Butler, JPS, Player’s, and Golden Virginia.
Imperial Tobacco Limited is part of Imperial Brands PLC, the FTSE100 parent company of a dynamic international business with around 34,000 employees.
With a strong track record of creating value for its shareholders, Imperial Brands’ core business is built around a tobacco portfolio that offers consumers comprehensive brand choice. Imperial Brands is also creating new consumer experiences through its non-tobacco subsidiary Fontem Ventures.
For more information, visit www.imperialbrandsplc.com
For more information please contact: Rob Taylor, Communications Executive, Imperial Tobacco email@example.com Mobile: 07973 743483 @ImpTobUK @suspect_report