WASHINGTON (Oct. 22, 2019)—The R Street Institute welcomes today’s announcement by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Tobacco Products that Swedish Match’s General snus has been granted the first Modified Risk Tobacco Product (MRTP) designation. This decision will provide tobacco users with important risk information that may help them decide to forego smoking combustible cigarettes.

After intense scrutiny, the FDA has agreed that Swedish Match met the standards to demonstrate that snus puts users at less risk for a variety of smoking-related illnesses when compared to smoking combustible cigarettes. The agency also found that marketing snus in this manner will not compel non-tobacco users to pick up the habit.

R Street Harm Reduction Policy Director Carrie Wade noted that the FDA’s decision should be considered an important first step in redirecting FDA regulation of tobacco products away from a process designed to protect the profits of the major cigarette-makers and toward one designed to reduce tobacco-related addiction, illness and death.

Wade added, “It is our hope that today’s announcement is the starting point for the FDA to acknowledge the benefits of providing consumers with factual information and to move the process along with other products that are up for review. It is also our hope that consumers will use this information to move away from the most dangerous products if they choose not to quit using tobacco.”