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FDA Panel Sets Hearing on Swedish Match Modified-Risk Request

SILVER SPRING, Md. — The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will review Swedish Match's request to certify its General snus product line as less harmful than cigarettes at a meeting in April.

The Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee has scheduled a two-day meeting beginning April 9 to discuss the company's request that the agency approve its snus products as "modified risk," according to The Associated Press.

In June, Richmond, Va.-based Swedish Match submitted a Modified Risk Tobacco Product (MRTP) application to the FDA for eight sub-brands in its General snus product line, as CSNews Online previously reported.

Snus, which is a smokeless tobacco product traditionally found in Scandinavia, is currently available in more than 20,000 stores in the United States.

With the MRTP application, Swedish Match is seeking a risk modification order permitting the use of warning label statements on the company's snus tobacco products that differ from those carried by other commercially marketed smokeless tobacco products.

According to the AP, the advisory panel's review and FDA's ultimate action on this application are being closely watched by both the public health community and tobacco companies, which are looking for new products to sell as they face declining cigarette demand.

The entire review process is expected to take about a year.

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