LANGUAGE
Last updated: July 27th 2020

Regulated Contents in Cigarettes

Regulatory Authority

Are contents and/or ingredients of cigarettes regulated?

Yes
Regulatory Authority:

GCC Standardization Organization; Ministry of Commerce and Industry

Analysis

Cigarette contents are regulated under GSO 2390/2014. Schedule I contains permitted tobacco additives. Schedule II contains prohibited tobacco additives.

Are cigarette emissions regulated?

Yes
Regulatory Authority:

Ministry of Commerce and Industry

Analysis

Cigarettes emissions shall not exceed the following limits: 0.6 mg of nicotine per cigarette, 10 mg of tar per cigarette, 12 mg of carbon monoxide per cigarette.

Status of Regulated Ingredients in Cigarettes

Sugars and sweeteners

Allowed

Examples of sugars and sweeteners include: glucose, molasses, honey and sorbitol.

Analysis

GSO 2390/2014 Schedule I contains permitted tobacco additives. Sugars and other sweeteners, including honey, maple syrup, molasses, sorbitol, and glucose are on this list. Therefore, sugars and sweeteners are permitted.

To align with FCTC Art. 9 and the FCTC Arts. 9 & 10 Partial Guidelines, the law should prohibit or restrict the use of ingredients used to increase palatability such as sugars and sweeteners in cigarettes.

Menthol, mint or spearmint (including analogues and derivatives)

Allowed
Analysis

GSO 2390/2014 Schedule I contains permitted tobacco additives. Menthol and food-grade aromas and flavors are on this list. Therefore, menthol, mint, and spearmint are permitted.

To align with FCTC Art. 9 and the FCTC Arts. 9 & 10 Partial Guidelines, the law should prohibit or restrict the use of ingredients used to increase palatability such as menthol, mint, or spearmint in cigarettes.

Spices and herbs (excluding mint)

Some Restrictions

Examples include: cinnamon and ginger.

Analysis

GSO 2390/2014 Schedule I contains permitted tobacco additives. Schedule II contains prohibited tobacco additives. Spices and food-grade aromas and flavors on are the Schedule I list and, therefore, are permitted generally. However, some herbs, including Herba Pulegii, Herba Tanaceti, and Herba Rutae, are on Schedule II and, therefore, prohibited. As a result, the regulatory status code “Some Restrictions” is given.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 9 and the FCTC Arts. 9 & 10 Partial Guidelines in that it regulates ingredients used to increase palatability such as spices and herbs (excluding mint) in cigarettes.

Other flavorings (not covered above)

Some Restrictions

Includes fruit flavorings. Examples of flavoring substances include benzaldehyde, maltol and vanillin.

Analysis

GSO 2390/2014 Schedule I contains permitted tobacco additives. Schedule II contains prohibited tobacco additives. Various other flavorings are listed on both Schedule I and Schedule II. Therefore, the regulatory status code “Some Restrictions is given.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 9 and the FCTC Arts. 9 & 10 Partial Guidelines in that it regulates ingredients used to increase palatability such as other flavorings (not covered above) in cigarettes.

Ingredients that facilitate nicotine uptake

Allowed

Examples include: ammonia.

Analysis

GSO 2390/2014 Schedule I contains permitted tobacco additives. Schedule II contains prohibited tobacco additives. Ammonia and other ingredients used to facilitate nicotine uptake are not on either list. Therefore, we interpret the law as allowing the use of ingredients in cigarettes that facilitate nicotine uptake.

To further FCTC Arts. 5.2 and 9, the law should regulate ingredients that facilitate nicotine uptake, such as ammonia.

Ingredients which may create an impression of health benefits

Allowed

Examples include: vitamins, such as vitamin C and vitamin E, fruit and vegetables (and products resulting from their processing such as fruit juices), amino acids, such as cysteine and tryptophan, and essential fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6.

Analysis

GSO 2390/2014 Schedule I contains permitted tobacco additives. “Food-grade aromas and flavors,” and “fruits, dried fruits, fruit pulps, fruit juices, concentrated fruit juices, and fruit syrups” are on this list. Therefore, ingredients that may create an impression of health benefits are permitted.

To align with FCTC Art. 9 and the FCTC Arts. 9 & 10 Partial Guidelines, the law should prohibit the use of ingredients in cigarettes that may create an impression of health benefits.

Ingredients associated with energy and vitality

Allowed

Examples include: caffeine, guarana, taurine and glucuronolactone.

Analysis

GSO 2390/2014 Schedule I contains permitted tobacco additives. “Food-grade aromas and flavors,” “coffee extract,” and “fruits” are on this list and, therefore, caffeine and guarana (a fruit) are permitted. Taurine (an amino acid) and glucuronolactone (a component of connective tissue) are not on Schedule I permitted additives, nor are they on Schedule II prohibited additives. Therefore, we interpret the law as allowing these additives.

To align with FCTC Art. 9 and the FCTC Arts. 9 & 10 Partial Guidelines, the law should prohibit the use of ingredients in cigarettes that are associated with energy and vitality.

Additional specified additives

Banned
Analysis

The following aromas and flavors are not permitted in tobacco products: Acidum agaricinicum, Oleum Betulae empyreumaticum, bitter almond oil associated with or containing hydrocyanic acid, Oleum Sassfras, Oleum Juniperi empyreumaticum, Oleum camphorae, Camphor, Coumarin, Safrole, and Thujone.

In addition, aromas and flavors produced from the following are not allowed: Stipites Dulcamarae, Lignum Camphorae, Rhizoma Polypodii, Rhizoma Filicis dulcis, Herba Pulegii, Lignum Quassiae, Cortex Quilaiae, Herba Tanaceti, Herba Rutae.