RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Cigarette maker Altria Group says it plans to expand its Marlboro Snus smokeless tobacco nationwide as it looks to alternatives to cigarettes for future growth.
The Richmond-based owner of Philip Morris USA, which makes the top-selling Marlboro brand, began testing the product in select markets in 2007. Snus (pronounced "snoose") are teabag-like pouches that users stick between their cheek and gum.
The company says it expects that national distribution will be in place by the end of March.
In an effort to move beyond cigarettes, Altria and other tobacco companies have introduced a number of smokeless products to keep smokers as buyers of other items. They are trying to convert smokers to products such as moist snuff, chewing tobacco and snus.