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Nicotine in Tim Hortons Coffee Hoax

Message claims that Canadian coffee and doughnut chain, Tim Hortons, adds nicotine to its coffee and that patrons have suffered serious health problems as a result (Full commentary below.)


Example:(Submitted May 2006)
Subject: about Tim Horton's coffee nicotine

Tim horton's THIS IS INTERESTING!!!!! Please Read

I'm not sure if this is true or not...but if it is, you'll certainly be seeing this in the news someday soon....I quess will just have to wait and see.

Are you a Non- Smoker or Against smoking all together ? Do you ever wonder why you have to have your coffee every morning?


A man from Arkansas came up to Canada for a visit only to find himself in the hospital after a couple of days. Doctor's told him that he had suffered of cardiac arrest. He was allergic to Nicotine. The man did not understand why that would of happened as he does not smoke knowing full well he was allergic to Nicotine. He told the doctor that he had not done anything different while he was on vacation other than having Tim Horton's coffee.

The man then went back to Tim Horton's and asked what was in their coffee.

Tim Horton's refuses to divulge that information. After threatening legal action, Tim Horton's finally admitted.....


A girl I know was on the patch to quit smoking. After a couple of days she was having chest pains & was rushed to the hospital. The doctor told her that she was on a Nicotine overload. She swore up & down that she had not been smoking. SHE WAS HAVING HER COFFEE EVERY MORNING.

Now imagine a women who quits smoking because she finds out that she is pregnant, but still likes to have her Tim Horton's once in a while.


This foolish piece of baseless scaremongering has now been circulating for several years.

© Mikhailin

Coffee Cup
Claims that Tim Hortons adds nicotine to its coffee are untrue
The message claims that Canadian coffee and doughnut chain, Tim Hortons, adds nicotine to its coffee and that patrons have suffered serious health problems as a result. However, these claims are totally unfounded. Tim Hortons does not add nicotine to its coffee nor has it ever done so.

Tim Hortons denies the rumour in a statement on its website:
This urban myth is just that. a myth!

Tim Hortons customers expect and deserve high quality coffee that is always fresh and consistent, along with fast, efficient service and all at a good value. Tim Hortons would like to clearly state that there is absolutely NO nicotine or MSG in our coffee. Tim Hortons coffee has NO ADDITIVES whatsoever. It is made only from a blend of the highest quality premium Arabica beans from several different coffee growing countries.

Tim Hortons decaffeinated coffee also contains no additives. It is decaffeinated through what is called the Swiss Water method, which is the purest manner of removing caffeine from the coffee. Tim Hortons believes that our focus on quality, service and value, is what keeps our customers coming back for more!
Furthermore, a 2004 investigation by CBC News confirmed the Tim Hortons statement. CBC had samples of Tim Hortons coffee independently tested. These tests revealed that Tim Hortons coffee had no measurable amount of nicotine. They also revealed that Tim Hortons coffee generally has less caffeine than that sold by Second Cup or Starbucks.

The message advises recipients that they might soon see this information on the news. However, there is no logic to this claim. If Tim Hortons was really adding a dangerous substance such as nicotine to its coffee, it would already be a major news story. The mainstream media would certainly not sit back and let such a sensational story travel solely by way of a poorly written email forward.

Thus, this bogus warning has absolutely no basis in fact and it should not be forwarded.

Earlier Example:
A friend recently told me that a co-worker's boyfriend works for an independent research lab that randomly tests consumer products and they found nicotine has been added to the coffee sold at Tim Horton's (Canada's largest chain of coffee/donut shops).

Tim Hortons Website
Tim Hortons: Is there nicotine or MSG in Tim Hortons coffee?
CBC: Brimming with caffeine and nicotine?

Last updated: 26th October 2009
First published: May 2006
Write-up by Brett M. Christensen