Official Journal of the European Union
Judgment of the Court (Fourth Chamber) of 9 December 2021 (request for a preliminary ruling from the Bundesgerichtshof — Germany) — Pro Rauchfrei eV v JS e.K.
(Case C-370/20) (1)
(Reference for a preliminary ruling - Manufacture, presentation and sale of tobacco products - Directive 2014/40/EU - Labelling and packaging - Article 8(8) - Health warnings which must appear on each unit packet of a tobacco product and any outside packaging - Automatic vending machine for cigarette packets - Health warnings not visible from the outside - Representation of unit packets - Concept of ‘images’ of unit packets and any outside packaging targeting consumers in the European Union)
Language of the case: German
Parties to the main proceedings
Applicant and appellant on a point of law: Pro Rauchfrei eV
Defendant and respondent in the appeal on a point of law: JS e.K.
Operative part of the judgment
Article 8(8) of Directive 2014/40/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 3 April 2014 on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States concerning the manufacture, presentation and sale of tobacco and related products and repealing Directive 2001/37/EC must be interpreted as meaning that images which are not faithful depictions of unit packets of cigarettes but which consumers associate with such unit packets on account of their design in terms of outline, proportions, colour and brand logo constitute ‘images of unit packets’ within the meaning of that provision.
Article 8(8) of Directive 2014/40 must be interpreted as meaning that an image of a packet of cigarettes which is covered by that provision but which does not carry the health warnings provided for in Chapter II of Title II of that directive is not compliant with that provision, even if the consumer has the opportunity to see those warnings on the packet of cigarettes corresponding to such an image before purchasing it.
(1) OJ C 390, 16.11.2020.