Sugars are commonly added to American-blended cigarettes, and the presence of sugars in cigarettes increases the appeal, toxicity, and addictive potential of smoking. The purpose of this study was to identify the types and relative quantities of added sugars in the tobacco of popular American cigarette brands. Methods: We reviewed the company websites of Philip Morris USA (PMUSA) and RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company (RJR) for brand-specific ingredient lists for all PMUSA (n = 179) and RJR (n = 162) cigarette brand styles (combined 79% of US cigarette sales in 2016) and composite lists of all cigarette tobacco ingredients for both companies. From these lists, we identified known forms of saccharides (mono-, di-, and oligosaccharides). Results: All PMUSA and RJR cigarette brands contained at least one type of added sugar, except one RJR brand (6 brand styles), which contained no additives. By weight, sugars were the number one ingredient (excluding tobacco and water) in all PMUSA brands (e.g., Marlboro, Parliament, Virginia Slims). Examples of sugars added to PMUSA brands included high fructose corn syrup, sucrose, maltol, and ethyl maltol. Among RJR brands, sugar was the number two ingredient by weight (excluding tobacco and water) in most brands (e.g., Camel, Newport, Pall Mall). In some RJR brands, quantities of added sugar relative to other ingredients were more variable, ranging from the first to fourth most used ingredient by weight (e.g., Carlton, Doral, Kent, More). Types of sugars added to RJR brands included high fructose corn syrup, brown sugar, honey, glucose, and a variety of fruit juice concentrates (e.g., apple, fig, pineapple). Interestingly, many menthol cigarette brands (e.g., Newport, Marlboro Menthol, Camel Menthol) contained greater quantities of added sugar than menthol. Conclusions: A variety of sugars, including sugars routinely added to processed foods and beverages, are added to American cigarettes. Further, by weight, added sugars were the number one or number two ingredient in most cigarette brands. Given that added sugars increase the appeal, toxicity, and addictive potential of smoking, regulatory actions should be considered (e.g., a product standard for sugar) for the protection of public health.

The following are the 17 highest scoring abstracts of those submitted for presentation at the 42nd Annual ASPO meeting held March 11–13, 2018, in New York, NY.