Well it seems that MPs are going to be voting on the introduction of plain cigarette packaging and the law could be introduced next year.
But why do they need plain packaging when there are already health warning messages and pictures on each packet of cigarettes and tobacco? The answer is that most smokers have a "negative hallucination" when ii comes to those messages and it's as if the messages aren't there. The anti smoking lobby argue that the branding and nice packaging distract the smoker from the health warnings.
It will be interesting to see what impact the new measures will have. Some claim there will be a resurgence of cigarette boxes or containers, so smokers will transfer their cigarettes from a shabby packet to a nice box. Personally I don't think it will have much impact on the regular smoker. Those who say they enjoy smoking will still smoke. However it may have an impact on teenagers and perhaps stop youngsters from taking up smoking - let us hope so.
Update 17th February 2015:
The British Psychological Society has today written http://www.bps.org.uk/news/new-evidence-plain-packaging-reduces-harm-smoking that there is new evidence that plain packaging reduces the harm from smoking, based on studies carried out in Australia.