New Cigarette Warning Labels

  • It's common knowledge that smoking is bad for you, but the U.S. Food and Drug Administration isn't sure you're getting the message. Despite links to cancer and heart disease, 20.6% of the adult population still smokes cigarettes, and about 1,000 children and teenagers take up the habit each day. That's why the agency unveiled nine new warning labels June 21, showing graphic images, including diseased lung tissue and a man's tracheotomy hole, as part of an initiative born of the 2009 Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, which gave the FDA regulatory authority over tobacco products for the first time. Together with statements like "Warning: Smoking can kill you," the new images will take up 50% of all cigarette cartons and 20% of all cigarette ads in the U.S. by October 2012.