tocacco plant Native American Tobaccoo flower, leaves, and buds

tocacco Tobacco is an annual or bi-annual growing 1-3 meters tall with large sticky leaves that contain nicotine. Native to the Americas, tobacco has a long history of use as a shamanic inebriant and stimulant. It is extremely popular and well-known for its addictive potential.

tocacco nicotina Nicotiana tabacum

tocacco Nicotiana rustica leaves. Nicotiana rustica leaves have a nicotine content as high as 9%, whereas Nicotiana tabacum (common tobacco) leaves contain about 1 to 3%

tocacco cigar A cigar is a tightly rolled bundle of dried and fermented tobacco which is ignited so that its smoke may be drawn into the mouth. Cigar tobacco is grown in significant quantities in Brazil, Cameroon, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Indonesia, Mexico, Nicaragua, Sumatra, Philippines, and the Eastern United States.

tocacco Tobacco is an agricultural product processed from the fresh leaves of plants in the genus Nicotiana. It can be consumed, used as an organic pesticide, and in the form of nicotine tartrate it is used in some medicines. In consumption it may be in the form of smoking, snuffing, chewing, dipping tobacco, or snus.


Companies dispute tobacco investments

Life and health insurance companies continue to invest in tobacco companies, according to a letter published in the June 4 New England Journal of Medicine detailing major insurers’ holdings. The letter is posted in its entirety on the Physicians for a National Health Program’s Web site (

The letter is signed by three physicians at the Cambridge Health Alliance, a system of three hospitals and clinics in Boston. The authors call for policymakers to exclude insurers from health system reform efforts based on companies’ interest in profits.

“In case there is any doubt that insurers place profit above health, consider their investments in tobacco,” the letter reads.

The listed companies, including Prudential Financial, New York Life Insurance Co., Sun Life Financial and Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co., sell primarily life insurance coverage, but in some cases offer health, disability and long-term care coverage as well.

The published figures show a combined $4.4 billion investment in five large tobacco companies.

The insurers strongly disputed the listed amounts of investments. Some said they invest in tobacco only on behalf of third parties.

“Prudential Financial Inc.’s corporate policy is not to invest in tobacco stocks for its own portfolios,” spokeswoman Gabrielle Shanin said in an e-mailed statement.

New York Life has the same type of policy, spokesman William Werfelman said in an e-mailed statement.

Sun Life Financial spokesman Steve Kee said the company’s tobacco holdings are much smaller than the researchers claim, equal to less than 0.005% of its more than $100 billion investment portfolio.

J. Wesley Boyd, MD, PhD, a psychiatrist and lead author of the letter, said he heard the same objections when he published a similar study in 1995, but that independent researchers and journalists had verified his findings.

Dr. Boyd said he based the published numbers on a March 26 search of the Osiris database, which allows users to identify owners of publicly traded companies.
© Copyright:Ama-assn

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