Health Minister Concerned Over New Oral Forms of Tobacco

Khaw Boon Wan

Health Minister Khaw Boon Wan has extended warnings against the emergence of various oral forms of tobacco, widely known as smokeless tobacco. These include dissolvable smokeless tobacco strips that give nicotine fix without smoke.

Snus is a kind of ground tobacco, which is packed into pouches that look similar to tiny tea bags. Users place it in the space between the cheek and gums of their upper lip. A great news is that snus doesn't require spitting, unlike chewing tobacco.

Mr. Khaw fears that such kind of dissolvable products could take soon take the appearance of nicotine candy to aim at children, potentially rendering them as life-long addicts.

With fewer Americans smoking cigarettes, the American tobacco industry is witnessed to make attempts to promote cigarette alternatives as a way to lure customers and trigger profits. In 2009, the tobacco industry estimated that cigarette volumes to squeeze by nearly 8 percent.

In such a scenario, Mr. Khaw calls out for a need to overhaul the Tobacco Control Act and reveals that a Bill will be launched soon.