Menthol Cigarette Use has Increased Among Teenagers

Menthol cigarette use is particularly high among teenagers, as well as in young minorities, the government advisers informed as part of a draft report that was released on Monday.

The Food and Drug Administration advisers said further than 80 percent of adolescent smokers from the black race and further than half of adolescent smokers from the Hispanic race smoke menthol cigarettes.

The information was part of a draft chapter to be included in a report next week. The FDA will utilize the report to help determine whether or not the agency will ban or restrict the use of mint-flavored or menthol cigarettes.

Any restrictions to the use of menthol cigarettes will certainly affect the product outflow of Lorillard Inc, the top menthol maker that sells the cigarette brand Newport. Other companies that sell menthol cigarettes include R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co of Reynolds American Inc, and Philip Morris of Altria Group Inc.

Based on the given data from Euromonitor International, menthol cigarettes account for almost one-third of the $83 billion annual cigarette sales in United States.

The draft also depicts that the increased usage of menthols among teenagers in general was brought by the remarkable increase in the quantity of white youths, aged 12 to 17, who are using menthol cigarettes.

The advisers will discuss their findings during a public meeting that will be held this Thursday and Friday. The complete report will be submitted to FDA on March 23.

Lorillard Inc has already filed a complaint that will prevent FDA from using the report given by the panel to make any official decision regarding the cigarettes.

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