The new Fresh manufacturered by JTI, are said to contain only 12.5% of the menthol found in the previous ranges.
The European Union Revised Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) has banned the manufacture and sale of menthol cigarettes. Despite Brexit, this ban also applies to the UK and includes capsule, click on, click & roll, crushball or dual menthol cigarettes, and excludes vaping and heated tobacco products. The measure went into effect on the 20th of May, and anyone caught selling the menthol products across the European Union (EU) could be fined up to €1,000.
However, pointed out an article on Pledge Times, tobacco shops are now selling an alternative to menthols. Manufactured by Japan Tobacco International (JTI), Fresh are said to contain only 12.5% of the menthol that the previous range contained.
A compund in menthols masks the harsh effect of smoke inhalation
Original menthols are known to contain compound menthol, a substance which triggers cold-sensitive nerves in the skin without actually providing a drop in temperature. “There is evidence that menthol cigarettes relax the airways and the flavour masks the harshness of the smoke, therefore younger people find it easier to smoke,” said Amanda Sandford, from Action on Smoking and Health (ASH).
“However, it is an absolute myth that menthol cigarettes are better for you. All cigarettes are harmful and menthol cigarettes are just as dangerous as normal cigarettes,” she added.
Meanwhile, a recent study from Ontario Canada had indicated that a month after the local menthol ban was being implemented, twice as many smokers than predicted had quit.
“We would actually expect the impact of this study to be even greater in the U.S. given the higher use and regularity of (menthol cigarette) use,” said lead author Michael Chaiton of the Ontario Tobacco Research Unit and the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto, said in an email.
If menthols were banned in the US there would be a 4.8% reduction in smoking rates
In line with these data, research conducted by Yale School of Public Health and the Centre for Health Policy at the Imperial College in London, had also indicated that if menthol flavoured cigarettes alone were to be banned in the US, there would be a 4.8% reduction in smoking rates, as most smokers would either switch to e-cigarettes, or quit.