Cigarette maker Lorillard is launching a campaign to defend menthol cigarettes amid a federal review of the minty smokes.
The nation's third-largest cigarette company that makes the top-selling menthol brand, Newport, has launched a website called "Understanding Menthol."
The site explains the Greensboro, N.C., company's position, the science under review by the U.S Food and Drug Administration's advisory committee, and the consequences of a potential ban on the product.
Lorillard also sent letters to more than a half-million Newport smokers about the FDA's review of claims that menthol cigarettes have greater public health impacts, including among children and certain ethnic groups.
Menthol is a key area for growth for tobacco companies in a shrinking cigarette market.