Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Tobacco Companies Changed Design Of Cigarettes Without Alerting Smokers

Date:
June 19, 2009
Source:
Harvard School of Public Health
Summary:
Researchers have shown that tobacco manufacturers have continually changed the ingredients and the design of their cigarettes over time, even if those changes have exceeded acceptable product variance guidelines.

As President Obama prepares to sign a bill giving the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversight of the tobacco industry, a new study from Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) researchers shows that tobacco manufacturers have continually changed the ingredients and the design of their cigarettes over time, even if those changes have exceeded acceptable product variance guidelines.

Related Articles


The result, say the researchers, is that consumers who buy the same brand of product are not made aware of how that product has been altered and what effect those alterations might have on their levels of addiction or harm.

"I hope the FDA requires disclosure of any changes made to tobacco products and that the changes are disallowed if shown to increase appeal, addiction and harm," said Greg Connolly, director of the Tobacco Control Research Program at HSPH.

The study appears in the "Online First" section of the Journal of Tobacco Control and will appear in an upcoming print issue of the journal.

For their study, Connolly and lead author Geoffrey Ferris Wayne, an HSPH researcher, studied internal tobacco company documents released following the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement. These documents describe significant changes made to commercial products over time, including blend, processing, casing, flavoring and physical design features. For example, new methods were developed to process tobacco, altering the smoke chemistry and the form of nicotine delivery, and the levels of processed tobaccos were regularly adjusted within brands.

Despite the constant innovation of tobacco products, which in many cases have exceeded the levels of acceptable variance established within the tobacco industry, for the most part, these changes were not disclosed to consumers, say the researchers.

"Even incremental changes that occur over a period of years can result in significant design differences. The resulting product may have altered chemistry or delivery, yet the smoker is largely unaware of these changes. This underscores the need for industry transparency and accountability," said Ferris Wayne.

The study builds on earlier research done at HSPH on how products are designed to enhance appeal and addiction. At Senate hearings on the FDA bill last year, Connolly discussed that research, including how tobacco companies have increased nicotine content over time, manipulated menthol and added candy-like flavors to enhance appeal to children.

Until regulators have a system in place for assessing product revisions, Connolly and Ferris Wayne advise that all changes to tobacco products be reported to the FDA and that no changes be allowed until they have been scientifically shown to reduce addiction or harm.

The study was supported by the National Cancer Institute.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Harvard School of Public Health. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Ferris Wayne et al. Regulatory assessment of brand changes in the commercial tobacco product market. Tobacco Control, 2009; DOI: 10.1136/tc.2009.030502

Cite This Page:

Harvard School of Public Health. "Tobacco Companies Changed Design Of Cigarettes Without Alerting Smokers." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 June 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090619171246.htm>.
Harvard School of Public Health. (2009, June 19). Tobacco Companies Changed Design Of Cigarettes Without Alerting Smokers. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090619171246.htm
Harvard School of Public Health. "Tobacco Companies Changed Design Of Cigarettes Without Alerting Smokers." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090619171246.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) IKEA is out with a new convertible desk that can convert from a sitting desk to a standing one with just the push of a button. Jen Markham explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

AFP (Oct. 24, 2014) A factory in China is busy making Ebola protective suits for healthcare workers and others fighting the spread of the virus. Duration: 00:38 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) The World Health Organization said on Friday that millions of doses of two experimental Ebola vaccines could be ready for use in 2015 and five more experimental vaccines would start being tested in March. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) An emergency room doctor who recently returned to the city after treating Ebola patients in West Africa has tested positive for the virus. He's quarantined in a hospital. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins