March 22, 2011 -
draft executive summary of "The Industry Menthol Report..
"The Industry Menthol Report" was submitted to the FDA at its request by the nonvoting tobacco industry representatives on TPSAC (Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee) and other tobacco industry stakeholders. Industry scientists with many decades of knowledge and experience in research involving tobacco, cigarettes and menthol have prepared this report after reviewing the best available data on the use of menthol in cigarettes. These scientists include leaders in their fields, recognized worldwide as experts for their published research investigating menthol and other constituents, as well as smoking and health issues.
Its major conclusions:
* Smoking prevalence is declining overall, nonmenthol cigarettes are preferred by most smokers, and menthol cigarettes are preferred by some subgroups of smokers.
* Menthol does not change the inherent health risks of cigarette smoking.
* Menthol in cigarettes has no meaningful effect on smoking biomarkers.
* Evidence on menthol and smoking topography is mixed; evidence does not support a conclusion that menthol cigarettes are smoked more intensely.
* Menthol does not meaningfully alter the chemical composition of mainstream smoke.
* Evidence is inadequate to conclude that menthol influences smoking initiation.
* Menthol has no meaningful impact on smoking cessation.
* Menthol has no meaningful impact on nicotine dependence.
* Numerous hypotheses put forth by TPSAC are speculative and cannot serve as the basis for regulatory policy.
* A ban on menthol will result in significant countervailing effects [including a black market].
Reference: 'First Step in Long Process' Lorillard, PM USA, RJR respond to TPSAC menthol report, vow to work with agency, CSP Daily News, 3/22/2011.