Tar & Nicotine Report - 1994

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The Federal Trade Commission made public today the results of tar, nicotine and carbon monoxide testing for 1,206 varieties of domestic cigarettes sold in 1994. The report to Congress, titled "Tar, Nicotine, and Carbon Monoxide of the Smoke of 1206 Varieties of Domestic Cigarettes For the Year 1994" (the T&N Report), will appear in the Federal Register shortly. The Commission has reported tar and nicotine test results since 1967.

The Tobacco Institute Testing Laboratory (TITL) conducted most of the tests; the Commission had unrestricted access to the TITL lab to review the testing methodology and to monitor the actual testing procedure. The T&N Report also includes tar, nicotine, and carbon monoxide ratings for generic and private label cigarettes and cigarettes that are not widely available; these varieties were tested by their manufacturers (not by TITL) using the same methodology, processes and test procedures as TITL used. In all cases, the results were supplied to the Commission by the individual companies under compulsory process.

The ratings published in this report reflect the relative yields of different cigarettes when they are smoked by a machine under identical conditions. They do not indicate what any individual smoker gets from any particular cigarette. Research indicates that many smokers of cigarettes with low ratings "compensate" by taking larger puffs or more frequent puffs from those cigarettes. The amount of tar and nicotine a smoker actually gets also can increase if the smoker unintentionally blocks ventilation holes in cigarette filters that are designed to dilute smoke with air. Both forms of compensatory smoking behavior can significantly affect the amount of tar, nicotine, and carbon monoxide a smoker gets from any cigarette. Given the limitations of the current system, the Commission is currently examining whether changes in the test method are appropriate that would more effectively communicate to smokers that any particular cigarette can give a range of tar and nicotine yields, and that how much any individual smoker gets from a cigarette depends on how he or she smokes it.

This T&N Report includes a new table that displays average tar and nicotine values, calculated on a sales-weighted basis, from 1968 through 1994. The Commission intends to continue reporting these data in the future.

Copies of the "Federal Trade Commission Report of the Tar, Nicotine and Carbon Monoxide of the Smoke of 1,206 Varieties of Domestic Cigarettes for the Year 1994" are available from the FTC's Public Reference Branch, Room 130, 6th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580; 202-326-2222; TTY for the hearing impaired 1-866-653-4261. To find out the latest FTC news as it is announced, call the FTC's NewsPhone recording at 202-326-2710. FTC news releases and other materials also are available on the Internet at the FTC's World Wide Web Site at: http://www.ftc.gov

(FTC File No. 962 3099)

Contact Information

Media Contact:
Brenda A. Mack
Office of Public Affairs
Staff Contact:
Phillip S. Priesman,
Bureau of Consumer Protection