Representative samples of smokers of regular middle tar and regular low tar cigarettes responded to a questionnaire concerning their smoking habits and participated in a blind product test, returning 24 hour butt collections from the smoking of both middle tar and low tar cigarettes. An estimate of the mouth intake of tar derived from a measurement of filter nicotine confirmed partial compensation by the low tar smokers relative to the middle tar smokers, resulting in 32% lower tar delivery rather than the 46% expected from the standard machine values. Most middle tar smokers (98%) achieved an estimated tar delivery within or below that of the league table middle tar band when smoking middle tar cigarettes, while 70% of low tar smokers had a mouth intake of 10 X 49 mg or below within the low tar band when smoking low tar cigarettes. These results support the current tar league tables as a guide to the smoker in selecting a lower delivery cigarette.
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