Owing to the increasing awareness regarding the risks of tobacco use, several tobacco companies have come up with tobacco products that are classified as “modified risk” products. According to the latest release by Institute of Medicine, the Food and Safety Administration has to put in more research before allowing the release of these products in the market. The formulation of these products is a part of the drive to save people from the risks associated with smoking. For people who do not want to kick the butt, these products are said to reduce the harm caused.
Several of these modified risk products also help smokers to quit smoking, the classic examples being e-cigarettes, tobacco patches and tobacco gums.
According to Institute of Medicine, all tobacco companies have to present their products before a third party, which is appointed by the FDA and holds the rights to reject products that do not live up to the claims. Appointing a third party for investigation serves the purpose of double checking all products that are presented to the FDA for approval. However, the tobacco industry is yet to agree to such regulations.
One of the reasons could be the fact that these products are yet to be completely declared as modified risk. In other words, there is no scientific or medical evidence that these products help in reducing the risk of tobacco usage. When a neutral third party is involved in the scenario, the trust factor on behalf of both the FDA and tobacco companies will be higher, according to the chairman of the committee and professor at the University of Cincinnati department of medicine and public health sciences, Jane Henney.
In order to curb the growing number of smokers in the United States, an act named as the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, was formulated in 2009. It is clearly specified in the act that all products that contain tobacco should undergo testing at the FDA and the manufacturer has to come forth with scientific proof that the product is a genuinely modified risk product. FDA has to collaborate with the Institute of Medicine in order to formulate reliable procedures that are used in the design of the products. Modified risk products enjoy a higher eminence in the public because they are perceived to reduce risks. This reliability factor should not be misused by releasing products that do not really modify risks. Further, it is also required to make test data available to the public so that they can understand what benefits the product offers over traditional tobacco products.