Why the FDA pushes forward with a ban on flavored e-cigarettes

The US Food and Drug Administration pushes back to the uncontrolled growth of the e-cigarette industry.

FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb is expected this week to announce a ban on most flavored e-cigarettes in an attempt to curb "Epidemic" levels of youth's e-cigarette use, senior FDA officials told CNBC and Washington Post .

Preliminary government data showed that e-cigarette use rose 77% in high school and almost 50% among middle schoolers in 2018, meaning that 3.5 million minors wake up early in 2018.

Although less harmful than tobacco research, research shows that many e-cigarette users are likely to develop nicotine dependence, and some will probably end up with regular cigarettes, a product that kills half its long-term users. Moreover, the long-term health effects of vaping are unknown.

The agency intends to prohibit the sale of flavored cartridge-based e-cigarettes in convenience stores and gas stations. Instead, they will only be sold in weapon and tobacco stores, which enforces age limits better.

The FDA also plans to restrict online sales to manufacturers following the FDA mandates for age verification. Gottlieb is also expected to propose banning menthol in regular cigarettes, which is likely to come back from the tobacco industry. Prohibitions will probably take weeks, if not months, to implement.

In September, Gottlieb provided five e-cigarette producers ̵[ads1]1; Juul, British American Tobacco's Vuse, Altria's Market, Imperial Brands, Blu E-cigs and Japan Tobaccos Logic – until Sunday to send put suggestions on how to fight youth's e-cigarette use. He has said that the FDA will share its own plan in mid-November.

Altria (Mo) has already said that it will remove its MarkTen pod-based products and will stop selling all tastes except menthol or tobacco in its products until the FDA assesses and approves them.

FDA's flavor restrictions will exclude menthol, meaning mentol and mint vape products will still be sold in convenience stores and gas stations – the FDA removes mentol cigarettes from the market. Officials are concerned that removal of menthol e-cigarettes would lead consumers to traditional menthol cigarettes.



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