Product categories

Cigarettes (reduced fire risk)

RFR label example
Check Cigarettes (reduced fire risk) for more information
This mandatory standard was registered on 22 September 2008. There are two critical compliance dates - 23 March 2010 and 29 September 2010. The mandatory standard covers performance, packaging and marking requirements for reduced fire risk cigarettes.

Under the mandatory standard, a cigarette is defined as a roll of cut tobacco enclosed in paper. A reduced fire risk cigarette is a cigarette that slows down the rate at which a cigarette burns. It is also more likely to self extinguish if the smoker does not draw on it.

Exclusions

Exclusions include, but are not limited to, loose tobacco and cigars.

On this page:

Hazards

Death and injury

  • Unextinguished cigarettes exposed to plant matter, particularly during dry weather, can cause extensive injury or death to humans, domestic animals and wildlife.

Destruction

  • Unextinguished cigarettes carelessly or deliberately exposed to clothing, furniture or other combustible materials can eventually ignite and cause significant destruction of personal/community property and vegetation.

Mandatory standard

The mandatory standard for reduced fire risk cigarette references the test methodology from the Australian Standard AS 4830-2007, Determination of the extinction propensity of cigarettes. This is a voluntary standard except for parts, variations and additions made by the:

To fully understand this mandatory standard you must read the above regulations that outline the mandatory aspects of the voluntary standard and other requirements. This mandatory standard was registered on 22 September 2008 and has two critical compliance dates: 23 March 2010 and 28 September 2010 (see futher detail below).

Does this apply to your business?

Under the ACL supply includes:

  • in relation to goods - (including re-supply) by way of sale, exchange, lease, hire or hire-purchase and
  • in relation to services - provide, grant of confer. 

This mandatory standard applies to anyone in the business of supplying reduced fire risk cigarettes, including:

  • manufacturers
  • importers
  • distributors
  • retailers.

To allow for staggered implementation, there are some cases where a mandatory standard or ban prescribes different compliance dates for the manufacturing, importing and supply of a product. Manufacturers, importers and distributors should check for this detail in the mandatory standard before embarking on production, importation or distribution of these goods.

 

Complying with the mandatory standard

To fully understand how to comply with the standard, suppliers must read:

This information is essential to ensure that you and your business comply with the mandatory standard.  Suppliers may also find the following documents helpful in understanding aspects of the mandatory standard:

Critical compliance dates

It is important to note that the dates for compliance were brought forward to coincide with the 2010 fire season. The two critical dates for compliance are:

  • 23 March 2010 - the date from which the mandatory standard applied to all cigarettes manufactured in, or imported into, Australia.
  • 23 September 2010 - the date from which the mandatory standard applied to all cigarettes supplied in Australia, no matter when or where they were manufactured or when they were imported into Australia.

Penalties and consequences

Supplying reduced fire risk cigarettes that do not meet the requirements of the mandatory standard can make you liable for heavy fines and product recalls.  For more details, view Penalties and consequences.

Some key requirements

The requirements below are key requirements only. They may help to give suppliers a general idea of the detail they must look up in the regulations.  This information may also assist consumers when they are choosing reduced fire risk cigarettes.

While we provide some advice on this page to help you understand some aspects of the standard, suppliers must not rely on this information as a complete guide to compliance.

Performance

  • At least 75 per cent of the cigarettes that are tested in a test trial must fail to achieve full length burns.

Labelling

  • All retail packs as defined by the mandatory standard must have the following statement:
    “AUSTRALIAN FIRE RISK STANDARD COMPLIANT.  USE CARE IN DISPOSAL.”

This statement:

  • must be clearly legible
  • must not obscure any warning messages, explanatory message or graphic required by law
  • may be printed onto an adhesive label, or directly onto the packaging.

Where adhesive labels are used, suppliers must ensure these are fastened in a way that:

  • ensures the label is not easy to remove
  • causes damage to the package if someone tries to remove it.

Alerts

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has negotiated recalls with two suppliers of cigarettes in Australia after testing revealed their products fail to comply with the mandatory safety standard for reduced fire risk.

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