Dutch smokers still don’t know what’s in their cigarettes

Smokers in the Netherlands are still not being told what has been added to the tobacco in their cigarettes, even though this has been required since 2008, Trouw reports on Monday.

While tobacco companies have delivered the information to government officials, the health ministry has not yet made the lists public, saying it hopes to publish the details this year.
‘The aim is to publish the information in an informative and public-friendly way. People need to be able to benefit from the information and draw the right conclusions,’ a spokeswoman for health minister Edith Schippers told the paper. ‘But this has taken more time than expected.’
Cocoa and menthol
Trouw says market leader Philip Morris has published a list of 209 ingredients which are added to tobacco for the Dutch market, while British American Tobacco’s list contains 137 ingredients.
The World Health Organisation is meeting in Geneva from tomorrow to discuss international rules for additives and flavourings in tobacco.
There is some evidence that additives – including menthol, liquorice, cocoa, sugar and the calming herb valerian – make it easier for new smokers to take up the habit, Trouw said.

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