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Smoke More, Suffer Less

A breakthrough in the attempt to develop tobacco containing less than one-tenth the usual amount of nicotine has been made by a local agronomist, it was announced by the chemical laboratory of the Israel Standards Institute, a government agency. Most tobacco nicotine is in the roots, it was said, and in the new process a hybrid plant has been developed by grafting tobacco plants onto another type of root, which was not disclosed. The nicotine content of a plant is thus reduced from 1.2-1.8 percent to .16 percent, the lab said. A large local firm has agreed to allot funds for developing the new plant. But local manufacturers said the new leaf was not up to taste and aroma standards.