South Korea’s Government has decided to require the inclusion of graphic health warnings on heat-not-burn (HNB) product packaging, according to a story in The Korea Times.
The Health and Welfare Ministry published their proposed graphic warnings for HNB product packs from May 14 to June 4 to gauge public opinion.
In response, cigarette manufacturers, distributors and smoking groups submitted eight dissenting opinions against the government’s decision. They asked the government to use ‘less provocative graphics’ and to take out numbers linked to mortality risk and disease.
However, health operatives and civic groups submitted 143 opinions of agreement supporting the government, with some asking that the warnings be enlarged.
The Ministry says it has now selected graphic warning labels and messages that will have to be printed on the packs.
It said the warnings would include an image of a cancer cell accompanied by a message saying ‘heat-not-burn e-cigarettes addict you to nicotine and expose you to carcinogens’.
“According to the latest study by the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety, various cancer-causing agents like benzopyrene and benzene were detected in HNB cigarettes,” a Ministry official said.
“The Ministry has concluded that the HNB cigarette companies’ argument that their products are less harmful than traditional cigarettes lacks evidence.”