For the purpose of establishing “a list of harmful and potentially harmful constituents, including smoke constituents, to health in each tobacco product by brand and by quantity in each brand and subbrand,” as required under section 904(e) of the FD&C Act, FDA believes that the phrase “harmful and potentially harmful constituent” includes any chemical or chemical compound in a tobacco product or in tobacco smoke that:
a) is, or potentially is, inhaled, ingested, or absorbed into the body, including as an aerosol (vapor) or any other emission; and
b) causes or has the potential to cause direct or indirect harm to users or non-users of tobacco products. Examples of constituents that have the “potential to cause direct harm” to users or non-users of tobacco products include constituents that are toxicants, carcinogens, and addictive chemicals and chemical compounds. Examples of constituents that have the “potential to cause indirect harm” to users or non-users of tobacco products include constituents that may increase the exposure to the harmful effects of a tobacco product constituent by:
- potentially facilitating initiation of the use of tobacco products;
- potentially impeding cessation of the use of tobacco products; or
- potentially increasing the intensity of tobacco product use (e.g., frequency of use, amount consumed, depth of inhalation). Another example of a constituent that has the “potential to cause indirect harm” is a constituent that may enhance the harmful effects of a tobacco product constituent.