Bad news for U.S. burley growers: Europe bans most tobacco additives

Posted by Rob Hotakainen on October 8, 2013 

Tobacco hung in a barn in Lancaster, Ky., last week. The European Parliament today approved tobacco rules that will crack down on the use of additives. Kentucky growers say the new rules will result in a de facto ban on burley because it's routinely mixed with other flavorings and ingredients to alter the taste.


Delivering a blow to the U.S. tobacco industry, the European Parliament today voted to ban the use of most additives and flavorings used to improve the taste of cigarettes.

Kentucky burley growers had lobbied against the measure, fearing the new rules would make it harder to sell their crop to Europeans. Currently, 43 percent of the burley grown in Kentucky is exported to Europe. The burley is routinely mixed with additives.

Backers of the new rules say they're aimed at making tobacco products less attractive to young people.

Under the new rules, all cigarette packs must also carry a health warning covering 65 percent of their surface.

The Parliament rejected a proposed ban on slim cigarettes.

Currently, 28 percent of all Europeans smoke, down from 40 percent in 2002. And smoking is blamed on 700,000 deaths each year in the European Union.


McClatchy Washington Bureau is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service