Reason the EU prohibits snus and not cigarettes
No matter where you’re located in the world, you may agree that the European Union (EU) can be a tad overreaching in its collective regulations. And by tad, we mean grossly. Case in point: The EU actually prohibits snus, with plans to put an outright ban on flavored product, but when it comes to cigarettes, the regulations are quite lax in comparison.
While the roots of snus run deep in Sweden, the movement to ban the product has also been around for quite some time. It all started back in 1992, when the World Health Organization concluded that snus was a carcinogenic. The sale of snus was expressly prohibited in most EU countries, with only Sweden and Norway (not an EU country though) receiving an exemption. Sweden got its exemption upon joining in 1994.
It is estimated that roughly 12% of Swedes use snus, and users of this tobacco product take it quite seriously. So much so, in fact, that there are discussions about leaving the EU altogether if a ban on snus would go through.
What really goads a lot of snus users isn’t necessarily the EU’s ban. The EU is rather good at prohibiting freedoms of people. That’s to be expected. No; what really gets under the stiff upper lips of snus users is the EU’s insistence that they want to make smoking cigarettes “less attractive,” while when it comes to snus they’re letting everything in the tub circle the drain.
It seems that EU’s goal is to the ban snus altogether, and the latest attack on flavored snus might be a way to sneak the entire camel under the tent.
But Snus Is Saved (At Least for Now)
Luckily for snus users in Sweden, the ban on flavored snus doesn’t seem to become a reality. EU’s health ministers decided in late June that Sweden is entitled to decide the ingredients without EU being part of the discussion.
“We have saved the snus so that we can decide content, product regulation, ingredients and characteristic flavors”, says Swedish minister Maria Larsson to the newspaper Svenska Dagbladet.
But who knows when we’ll see the next attempt to ban snus. There will be one, that’s for sure.
Reason for Differences between Snus and Cigarettes
Currently, politicians are meeting, hands are shaking, and there’s more action under the table than a dinner party at Hugh Hefner’s mansion. But none of that is as important as knowing what’s behind it all. Money!
The Swedish government has no plans to withdraw from the EU, but the plans to protect snus are still being drawn – along with stark battle lines in the sand.
When it comes to cigarettes, the money situation is clear. If the EU really cared about people’s health, they wouldn’t pick and choose which products to prop up on a soapbox, and they certainly wouldn’t suggest a “ban” that includes, wait for it… not banning anything but entrepreneurial achievement!
The EU is playing favorites with the deepest pockets, and that’s always the case. Snus users are still under attack in a big way, but the product is still widely available.