FDA Says Tobacco Companies Must Report Harmful Chemicals

In a move designed to further educate the public about the dangers of tobacco products, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has told the tobacco industry that it must report the amount of unsafe chemicals in its products and also prove that smoking alternatives, such as snuff, are actually lower-risk substitutes to smoking as some of them have claimed.

This FDA action is a mandate of the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Law Act that passed in 2009. It gave the agency the authority to regulate tobacco products and required the tobacco industry to give the FDA information on the quantities of harmful chemicals in products starting in 2012. The agency plans to disseminate this information to the public by April of 2013.

The FDA released a list of 93 chemicals – which it calls Harmful and Potentially Harmful Constituents (HOHCs) – that tobacco firms would have to report quantities of in their products.

According to the draft guideline submitted by the FDA, the tobacco industry will also be asked to submit scientific information, including research findings to corroborate claims that some of their products – like snuff, tobacco lozenges, and snus – are actually safer alternatives to smoking.

FDA Commissioner, Margaret Hamburg, said in a statement, ” We are forging new territory to ensure that tobacco companies provide accurate information and do not mislead American consumers.”

The tobacco litigation attorneys at Farah & Farah believe that requiring Big Tobacco to report the quantities of harmful chemicals in products is something that is long overdue. It’s time to end the industry’s long history of smoke and mirror games. If you or a loved one has been harmed by tobacco products, please call us at (800) 533-3555.

Sources: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-03-30/tobacco-makers-must-list-ingredients-prove-safety-claims.html;http://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm297878.htm