April 10, 2012
Cigarettes are known to contain preservatives and harmful chemicals. Yet manufacturers of tobacco products aren’t required to list those chemicals. Instead, the manufacturers are only required to provide a warning that the product may cause cancer and other health problems.
However, that could change if the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) passes new guidelines for the tobacco industry. According to KVUE News, the FDA is considering forcing manufacturers of tobacco products to list any additives on the outside packaging of a pack of cigarettes.
Dr. Lawrence Deyton, director of the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products, told reporters that “cigarettes are the only mass-consumed product in this country for which consumers don’t know what’s in them, until now.”
The agency made the announcement Friday, adding that cigarettes contain more than 7,000 chemicals in tobacco products, and that at least 93 of them are harmful to a person’s health. The change will be implemented next year.
The move comes after a 2009 law change gave the FDA a large share of power when it comes to controlling the marketing and manufacturing of tobacco products and is being seen as a first step in tighter regulation of the industry as alternative tobacco products have begun to emerge.