23 Mar 2012
According to the Chair of the Framework Convention Alliance, Paula Johns, “this global precedent will certainly inspire other countries, and was a critical step in limiting the tobacco industry’s tactics for luring young people to start smoking”.
“We have been monitoring the industry and it is crystal clear that they have been inundating the market with various editions of menthol cigarettes in the last couple of years. Some of the brands have a special device that changes the cigarette’s taste when you click the filter after lighting up,” added Johns, who is also Director of ACT-Brazil.
Brazil’s National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa) announced its decision for the ban on 13 March 2012. Tobacco manufacturers have 18 months once Anvisa’s decision is officially published to take their flavoured cigarettes off Brazil’s market, and 24 months to take other flavoured tobacco products from shop shelves.
There are some exceptions to the ban permitted, both for sweeteners – to replace sugars lost during the curing process – and colours, including bleaching agents for paper, to indicate brand or logo on the cigarette or to imitate a cork filter tip.
Research from the Brazilian School of Public Health with data from the Global Youth Tobacco Survey has shown that almost 60 percent of 13-15-year-olds experiment with flavoured cigarettes, particularly menthol.
Brazil has now adopted the strongest ban on flavours and additives in the world.