tobacco companies in Canada are required to list on their packages the amounts of specific toxins emitted in cigarette smoke. The new regs are aimed at giving consumers more info about the health hazards associated with smoking. But there's a lot more that tobacco companies as of last week
Ingredients and toxic emissions that have been voluntarily listed by tobacco companies: tar, nicotine and carbon monoxide.
What must now be listed on cigarette packages: all of the above plus the minimum and maximum amounts of formaldehyde, hydrogen cyanide and benzene produced per cigarette smoked.
WHAT THE PACKAGE WONT TELL YOU
Formaldehyde -- classified as a probable human carcinogen by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; used as a disinfectant; preservative for human and animal specimens.
Hydrogen cyanide -- can spontaneously explode in its purest state; used in synthetic fibre and plastics production.
Benzene -- declared toxic under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act; used in the manufacture of dyes and synthetic rubbers.
Carbon monoxide -- poisonous gas reduces capacity of red blood cells to carry oxygen to tissues with the greatest oxygen demands: heart, brain and skeletal muscles.
Nicotine -- naturally occurring substance found in tobacco plant that's responsible for inducing dependence.
Tar -- contains hundreds of chemicals, many of which are classified as hazardous waste and carcinogenic; up to a kilogram of the gooey stuff is deposited in the lungs of a pack-a-day smoker per year.
WHATS IN THE BRAND YOURE SMOKING
Du Maurier Regular Filter
Triacetin -- greasing agent used in shampoos and as a perfume diluent.
Titanium dioxide -- whitening agent from iron ores and beach sand also used in coatings, enamels, paints, and lacquers.
Player's Light Fine Cut
Propylene glycol -- solvent used in acrylics, stains, inks and dyes; an explosion-proof refrigerator is the recommended storage container for undiluted quantities.
Propane -- that's right, the gas used to light your barbecue.
Matinee Fine Cut
Glycerol -- trihydric alcohol also used in the manufacture of dynamite and as a component in antifreeze.
Export "A' Regular Filter
Polyvinyl acetate -- adhesive used in wood glue, latex and acrylic paint and coatings on paper and textiles.
A chemical similar to rocket fuel helps keep cigarettes lit.
Ammonia is added to cigarettes so nicotine can be absorbed more quickly into the lungs.
Radiation from smoking one and a half packs per day is equal to 300 chest x-rays a year.
Cigarette smoke is 10,000 times more concentrated than automobile pollution at rush hour on a freeway.OTHER ODDBALL AND TOXIC INGREDIENTS THAT HAVE BEEN FOUND IN SMOKES
Corn syrup, cork, cadmium (used in batteries), mercury, valerian root extract, fungicides, pesticides, nickel, arsenic, butane, cyanide, DDT (insecticide), lead, maltitol (sweetener for diabetics), naphthalene (ingredient in mothballs), polonium (radioactive element), beet juice concentrate, beeswax, capsicum oleoresin (pepper spray), butter oil, citronella oil, coffee, fig juice concentrate, ethyl alcohol, maple syrup, mace powder, nutmeg, rum, rye extract, gum, wine, yeast.
Sources: Health Canada; BC Ministry of Health; Imperial Tobacco; Macdonald Tobacco; Non-Smokers Rights Association of Canada; What's In A Cigarette? by K.H. Ginzel, professor of pharmacology and toxicology, University of Arkansas