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 cigarettes smoking, snuffing, chewing, dipping tobacco, or snus.

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Tobacco Regulation Benefits Industry, Consumers, and the Public

Communities are often defined, at least in part, by the businesses that call them home. The history of our great commonwealth has been closely intertwined with tobacco since the first days of Jamestown.

Tobacco has played and continues to play an important role in Virginia’s economy. Thou sands of our citizens are connected to the industry, either by helping grow tobacco, by working for a tobacco company, or by selling goods and services to others who do.

So when the government passes legislation affecting the industry, our friends and neighbors notice. And when the largest tobacco company in the area, indeed the nation, supports more regulation, it’s reasonable to explain why.

Altria and Philip Morris USA have supported federal regulation of tobacco products by the Food and Drug Administration for nearly a decade — and with good reason. Fundamentally, we cannot ignore the health issues associated with tobacco use and their implications for consumers and society as a whole. At the same time, as Congress confirmed by passing this legislation, society has decided to continue to permit the sale of tobacco products to adults and to leave decisions about the use of tobacco products to those adults.

We believe that a comprehensive regulatory framework, implemented thoughtfully, can provide significant benefits to tobacco consumers.

These benefits include establishing a common set of high standards for all tobacco manufacturers and importers doing business in the U.S., providing a framework for the evaluation of tobacco products that are potentially less harmful than conventional cigarettes, and creating clear principles for accurate and scientifically grounded communication about tobacco products to consumers.

We also believe that such a framework offers significant benefits to us and others in the tobacco industry. As we all know, tobacco products and tobacco companies have been a source of considerable conflict and controversy over the years.

In the late 1990s, Philip Morris USA was being sued by many state attorneys general, there was extensive debate in Washington about additional regulation, and society was calling for change in the way the industry did business. We realized then, and we still believe now, that change was necessary.

We firmly believe that federal regulation of tobacco products is a significant step in the right direction.

Through the years, we have faced criticism from within the industry and questions about our motives from others. We stand alone in our industry in supporting the legislation that just passed. But leadership is rarely easy.

By supporting FDA regulation, we hoped to provide leadership in helping resolve many of the issues that concern the public, our consumers, the public health community, and our tobacco companies, including a framework for guidance on harm-reduction efforts.

Is the legislation is perfect? No. The bill awaiting the president’s signature is the result of compromises by all involved. There are some provisions that we believe cross constitutional limits, and we made our views well-known on that. Moving forward, however, we hope to work constructively with the FDA on these and other issues.

Clearly, regulation will mean changes for the industry. Many have fought against regulation and continue to resist the changes it will bring, claiming some companies will gain a unique competitive advantage from this legislation. To the contrary, the legislation establishes a level playing field for all industry players.

As in any industry, the companies that best meet the evolving preferences of their consumers while adapting to a new environment will be the ones that succeed. That is exactly what we plan to do.

In the end, having clear rules established by a federal agency should provide more predictability for how all tobacco businesses are expected to operate. And that predictability will best serve the interests of our consumers, employees, retirees, suppliers, and the countless others who benefit from the fact that Altria calls Richmond home.
© Timesdispatch

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