Big TobaccoHelp Needed

A Letter To The CDC

CDC logoI received an email from a user the other day inquiring about nicotine levels in Skoal Xtra.  After doing some Googling of my own, I found out that it’s very difficult to find specific information.  I told the user that I’d do some additional research for and get back to him.  In addition to my efforts, he’s sent the following email to the CDC trying to get some information.  Letter is reprinted here with his permission:

I am and have been addicted to smokeless tobacco for many years.  It angered me when US Tobacco (now owned by Altria) came out with a new brand, Skoal Xtra.

They are selling this brand for 50% less than their older brands (2.50 vs 5.00).  I bought a tin, same kind as their older Long Cut Mint and didn’t notice much difference.  When searching on the internet to find out the difference, I found many blogs saying the only difference was the Xtra had more nicotine.  As a user I was bothered by this; lord knows I don’t need more nicotine.  I then proceeded to call Altria to find out the truth.  Surprisingly,  I was told they are not required to make available nicotine content or any other percentages of the ingredients.  They referenced an act by the FTC  on 11/26/08 rescinding the previous ruling of making this info public.  However, after some research I believe they are wrong.  Through the Comprehensive Smokeless Tobacco Health Act 99-252, I believe they must disclose this information.

How is a consumer supposed to make an informed decision if they do not have access to this info?
In sum, what bothers me the most, if the blogs are correct is the following:

If I’m in the business of addicting my customers to my product, what a brilliant idea to charge 50% less than the entire marketplace to bring in new consumers and make them customers for life cause they can’t break free from the addiction to higher nicotine content.  I realize they are an extremely large corporation, that needs to sell product, but if true, this is slimy.

Please help me get info on Skoal Xtra.
I appreciate your assistance to this matter.

Here’s a consumer that’s legitimately looking for information on a product that he uses.  The vendor is simply not providing information about their product.  Please consider sharing this article and writing your own letters.  If they’re not going to stop making these products at the very least they need to be transparent as to what’s in them.

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