The WHO Collaborating Centre for Tobacco Product Regulation and Control is one of the leading labs within the WHO Tobacco Free Initiative (TFI) Tobacco Laboratory Network (TobLabNet).
The Netherlands and the European Union have joined the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC). The FCTC aims to reduce tobacco use and has more than 170 parties worldwide. Article 9 of the FCTC deals with the composition of tobacco products, including the additives. According to Article 10 of the FCTC, tobacco manufacturers must disclose this composition to the governments of the countries where they market their products.
The FCTC recommends prohibiting or regulating the use of flavour-enhancing additives such as sugars, menthol and vanilla. These additives contribute toward making it easier for people to start and continue smoking. In countries such as the United States, Canada, Australia and France, the addition of flavour-enhancing additives to tobacco is already (partly) prohibited.
RIVM supports TobLabNet with content and emissions testing of tobacco products and tobacco related products as described in Article 9 (Regulation of the contents and emissions of tobacco products) of the WHO FCTC. In addition, we support TFI in the context of Article 10 (Regulation of tobacco product disclosures) of the FCTC with respect to the development of a global database for disclosure of information to the government and to the general public.
WHO CC Tobacco is led by Dr Reinskje Talhout, senior researcher at RIVM Centre for Health Protection. RIVM staff involved in the activities are based at the Centre for Health Protection (head Annemieke de Vries, PhD) and at the Centre for Safety of Substances and Products (head Jan Roels PhD).