The "Swedish Experience"

Data on the use of snus

  • In 2011, 10 percent of all adult Swedish men smoked daily. The corresponding figure for Norway was 19 percent, and 22 percent for Denmark, with the European average (2010, latest data) at 32 percent (1).
  • In 2011, 18 percent of all adult Swedish men used snus on a daily basis, compared with 12 percent of men in Norway who used snus daily, while in Denmark 1.5 percent used some form of smokeless tobacco regularly (1).
  • In 2011, 12 percent of all adult Swedish women smoked daily. The corresponding figure for Norway was 19 percent, with 22 percent for Denmark, while the European average (2010, latest data) was 21 percent (1).
  • In 2011, 3 percent of all adult Swedish women used snus daily, with the corresponding figure in Norway being 2 percent, while in Denmark 0.2 percent used some form of smokeless tobacco regularly (1).
  • In 1997, Sweden became the first country worldwide to meet the WHO’s goal for 2000, namely, that the proportion of adult smokers would be less than 20 percent (3). The second country to meet this target was Iceland in 2005, which also has a long tradition of using smokeless tobacco.
  • In 2000, 10 percent of deaths among Swedish men were smoking-related, or the lowest proportion in Europe. The average figure for the 25 EU countries (EU 25) was 23 percent (4).
  • Swedish women showed the same smoking-related mortality rate as the average for the EU’s 25 countries in 2000, namely, 7 percent (4).
  • In 2000, the risk of a 35-yer-old man dying of a smoking-related illness before the age of 70 was 3 percent in Sweden, compared with 5 percent in Norway, 8 percent in Denmark and an average 9 percent for EU 25 (4).
  • Corresponding figures for women were 2.1 percent in Sweden, 2.6 percent in Norway, 5.9 percent in Denmark, and for EU 25 an average of 1.6 percent (4).
  • The incidence of lung cancer among Swedish men has fallen during the past 20 years. Swedish women, however, are displaying a rising trend in terms of lung cancer statistics (5).
  • Two epidemiological studies conducted in Sweden did not show any relationship between the use of Swedish snus and oral cancer (6, 7).
  • Two epidemiological studies on stomach and esophageal cancer did not show any relationship between Swedish snus and a higher risk for any of these cancer forms. (8, 9).
  • The cancer mortality rate is not higher among Swedish users of snus (10).
  • The risk of heart attack is not higher among snus users (11).
  • In a study covering Swedish snus users, researchers find no significant increase in diastolic blood pressure, hemoglobin concentration, white blood cell count, and serum cholesterol or triglyceride levels. These results contrast with similar studies of cigarette smokers (12).
  • Snus users as well smokers run a higher risk of dying from heart or cardiovascular illnesses than non-tobacco users. The risk is lower for a snus user than for a smoker. (10).
  • There is a high probability that the health risks presented by snus are less than the health risks associated with smoking (13, 14).

The figures within parentheses refer to the list of references.

Click here for the references. Thanks to Swedish Match.

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