FDA mulls ban on flavored e-cigarettes

US government considers ban on flavored e-cigarettes over youth 'epidemic'

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is strongly considering banning all flavored e-cigarettes.

"The disturbing and accelerating trajectory of use we're seeing in youth and the resulting path to addiction must end", Gottlieb told agency staffers and reporters. The agency also imposed fines - ranging from $279 to $11,182 - on another 130 establishments for repeated offenses.

As a result of its findings, the agency issued letters to the manufacturers of the five brands asking each company to submit within 60 days plans describing how they will address youth access and use of their products.

"I've been warning the e-cigarette industry for more than a year that they needed to do much more to stem the youth trends", he said.

Most of the violations found in the undercover blitz, conducted from June through August, were for the illicit sale of Vuse, Blu, JUUL, MarkTen XL and Logic e-cigarette products, according to the FDA.

"These alternative nicotine delivery devices can be important for helping adults get off of combustible tobacco as an offramp", said Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar to FOX Business' Maria Bartiromo on Thursday.

Studies show that teens who vape are also more likely to go on to smoke traditional burned cigarettes. Regulators are considering restricting e-cigarette manufacturers from selling flavored nicotine liquid or forcing the products to undergo an agency review, as reported by CNBC.

Gottlieb warned action may require companies to change their sales and marketing practices; stop distributing products to retailers who sell to kids; and remove "some or all of their flavored e-cig products from the market".

Medical experts still don't know the potential risks of vaping, though most agree it's safer than smoking traditional cigarettes, according to a local physician.

Millennials and hipsters beware, big government wants to come for your e-cigarettes if teenagers do not stop using them.

Under Wednesday's announcement, the five largest e-cigarette manufacturers will have 60 days to produce plans to reverse underage use of their products.

The FDA is trying to set up a framework for regulating e-cigarettes.

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Actions being considered - but not yet undertaken - include the immediate removal of certain flavored e-cigarettes from the market and shortening the time to market review for most cigarettes now being sold. Sales were allowed to continue in the interim.

The FDA is in the process of rolling out a sweeping anti-smoking created to make it easier for smokers to quit by cutting the nicotine levels in regular cigarettes.

Shares of Altria, the maker of Marlboro cigarettes in the US, rose as much as 5.3 percent to $62.60 in NY, the biggest intraday gain in eight years.

The FDA is dealing with a lawsuit from some public health groups for delaying until 2022 certain rules of electronic cigarettes.

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said in the press release that the "youth use of electronic cigarettes has reached an epidemic proportion".

Why is the use of e-cigarettes by young people so concerning?

But Gottlieb says sales have soared, especially to teens, who can quickly become addicted to nicotine.

Also, the agency is probing manufacturer's online shops for "straw" purchases in which buyers resell products to minors. Similarly, Philip Morris rose the most in over three years. The FDA has pressed Juul in recent months for information about its marketing.

The FDA singled out Juul in its press release, saying that the company's products are especially popular among, and unsafe for, high school students.

"My own work, along with the work of many others, suggests that rising cigarette taxes have been the most effective means of reducing smoking levels in the United States", he said. We welcome the opportunity to demonstrate, and work with the FDA to further strengthen, our youth access prevention policies and procedures.

Still, Myers said, there's "no way to put that genie back in the bottle" with youth use. In other cases, such as when adult smokers use them to quit smoking, they offer an opportunity to reduce smoking-related illness. No flavors now are restricted from other tobacco products.

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