Health Care

Trump's FDA Chief Softens Vaping Regulations To Combat Big Tobacco

Trump's FDA Chief Softens Vaping Regulations To Combat Big Tobacco”

The anticipated new enforcement policy will not affect any current requirements for cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, only the newly-regulated tobacco products such as cigars and e-cigarettes.

On Friday, the Food and Drug Administration announced that the agency is taking a new approach to nicotine, sending cigarette makers spiraling lower. The agency wants to strike "an appropriate balance between regulation and encouraging development of innovative tobacco products that may be less risky than cigarettes".

MORE | Find more on the FDA proposal here.

More news: Independent Investors Inc. Lowers Position in Vodafone Group PLC (VOD)

Our concerns: (1) Lowering the levels of nicotine in combustible cig products is a negative for manufacturers, although Commissioner Gottlieb makes it clear that the FDA would seek a balanced approach to avoid "unintended consequences" (e.g., increase black market activity); and (2) Increases some risk that of a federallymandated ban/restriction on menthol cigs could occur but again, we believe highly unlikely given the unintended consequences would need to be considered.
They will not be subject to review until 2021. Testing e-cigarette and vapor products was costly, and was also a vague process. For too long, American public health officials have been unreasonably hostile to e-cigarettes, which are far less hazardous than the conventional kind and offer a closer simulation of the real thing than nicotine gum or patches do.

"E-cigarettes are just a mechanism to deliver nicotine in an attractive format", Bhavna B. Mukhopadhyay, chief executive of the Voluntary Health Association of India, stated.

According to The Verge, although the FDA can't ban nicotine from cigarettes, it can set the maximum amount cigarettes can hold, which is how they may reduce nicotine to the "non-addictive" levels they cite in the announcement. University of Pittsburgh professor Eric Donny, who has studied the regulation of tobacco, told The Verge that in order for nicotine levels to become "non-addictive", or less addictive than they are now, the FDA would likely have to cut it by 85 to 95 percent. Since supposedly "kid-friendly" e-liquids are very popular among adults who switch from smoking to vaping, it's a bit worrisome that the FDA plans to solicit public comment on regulation of flavors, which it acknowledges may be "helping some smokers switch to potentially less harmful forms of nicotine delivery".

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