Fighting addiction: the US wants to reduce the amount of nicotine in cigarettes
The White House is considering implementing a measure that would force cigarette companies to adjust nicotine levels in their products to non-addictive or minimally addictive levels. Writes about it Independent.
It is also reported that the administration of US President Joe Biden is considering a complete ban on menthol cigarettes, which have long been considered the entry point for young smokers.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which oversees tobacco, must respond to a petition from citizens to ban menthol cigarettes by April 29.
FDA sources say there is strong support for the menthol cigarette and small cigar ban.
The 2009 Tobacco Control Act banned the addition of candy, fruit and spice flavors to cigarettes because of their potential appeal to children, but did not address menthol.
The FDA estimates that there are over 19 million menthol cigarette smokers in the United States, and the vast majority are African American.
The agency says nicotine itself does not cause cancer, lung disease or heart disease, but it is addictive to cigarettes, which causes 480 deaths in the United States each year.
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Wall Street tobacco stocks plummeted after news of a potential ban emerged, with Altria down more than 6%, British American Tobacco down 2% and Philip Morris International more than 1%.
“Any action taken by the FDA must be based on scientific evidence and evidence, and take into account the real consequences of such action, including the growth of an illegal market and the impact on hundreds of thousands of jobs from farm to local stores across the country,” said Altria spokesman George Parman.
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