Candy Flavored Cigarettes?

According to a new study from the Stanford School of Medicine, tobacco companies pumped up the advertising and lowered the price of menthol cigarettes in stores near California high schools with larger populations of African-American students.

That cigarette companies use predatory marketing strategies doesn’t surprise me at all. What I find shocking is a piece of news I missed at the time: A federal law passed in 2008 banned 13 candy flavorings in cigarettes. Candy flavorings in cigarettes. (So egregious, makes me embarrassed to be of the same species that dreamed it up.)

The 2008 ban, however, allowed the continued use of menthol flavoring. (I can just imagine the negotiating between the tobacco lobby and legislators: we’ll give up bubble gum and fruit punch, if we can keep peppermint.) Menthol makes the smoke from tobacco smoother and less harsh; even non- menthol cigarettes often have low levels of the additive.

Presently, the FDA is gathering information on whether to ban menthol as a flavoring agent in cigarettes.

Although cigarette makers deny using race or ethnicity to target consumers, the lead researcher for the study said the data shows a “predatory” marketing pattern geared to luring young African Americans into becoming smokers.

According to a press release for the study: a draft report by the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee, which the FDA asked to investigate the harms from the use and marketing of menthol cigarettes, found that the use of menthol cigarettes is highest among minorities, teenagers and low-income populations. Advertisements often tout the “freshness” of menthol cigarettes, and the report said many smokers mistakenly believe that the addition of menthol makes cigarettes less of a health risk.

“When kids are exposed to more cigarette advertising they are more likely to start smoking, which will undoubtedly lead to dire health consequences,” said senior author Stephen Fortmann, MD, a professor emeritus of medicine at Stanford who is now a senior investigator at Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research in Portland, Ore. “Our study finds that tobacco companies are trying to make smoking more attractive to teens, when we as a society should be doing just the opposite.”

“Adding menthol to cigarettes makes it easier to smoke and harder to quit, so the public health community strongly supports an FDA ban on menthol flavoring,” Fortmann said.

Along with menthol, other research has shown that the key purpose of using additives is to improve tobacco’s potency resulting in increased addictiveness–and the additives they choose to use are dreadful.

For a full list of additives, see The Shocking Ingredients in Cigarettes

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Deny Fell
.3 years ago

This info you provided in the blog that was really unique I love it!!! black stillare

Elena T.
Elena Poensgen4 years ago

Thank you :)

Estelle S.
Estelle S4 years ago

Waste of $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$4

Sarah Z.
Sarah Z5 years ago

Thank you

paul m.
paul m5 years ago


Vera Yuno
Vera Yuno5 years ago

People should only smoke weed. Tobacco, whatever taste, with the 500 toxic added subtances will kill you, eventually

Mary S.
Mary S5 years ago

I smoked as a teenager and in my early twenties. I would only smoke vanilla Djarum clove cigarettes. I quit cold turkey when my husband (then boyfriend) said "you're much more attractive when you aren't smoking." Shortly after I quit the ban was enacted so there was nothing available if I were to go back to smoking unless I bought cigars because that is where the loophole lies. I just find the smell to be sickening now.

Will Rogers
Will Rogers5 years ago

Cigarettes are poisonous, whatever the flavour, but I have never met a black person that smokes menthol...ok I'm English, but know lots of black people, most don't smoke, especially the women. And those who do, just like everyone else, blames it on childhood mistakes but can't stop because of the addiction. But seriously, what do you expect ciggy companies to do? They're the governments drug dealers! There are 2 government drugs, one hard (alcohol) and one soft, (cigarettes) which according to them should cover all our recreational drug wants.
And you can be guaranteed that they put up different billboards with differing racial mixes for each area. Mexicans for Mexicans, whites for whites, Chinese for Chinese. You're not going to find Chinese advertising in white areas! These are clever unscrupulous people trading in something more addictive than heroin! (Heroin addicts, while able to kick 'Horse', still smoke ciggies)

Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W5 years ago

Why do people still smoke?...

Elizabeth Brawn
Elizabeth Brawn5 years ago

they should ban menthol flavoured ciggarettes