Congress Seems Poised To Let the FDA Ban E-Cigarettes Containing Synthetic Nicotine

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A spending bill provision would redefine “tobacco products” to include products that have nothing to do with tobacco.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) seems intent on banning nearly all of the nicotine vaping products currently available in the United States, even though it acknowledges their harm-reducing potential as an alternative to combustible cigarettes.

But under current law, the FDA’s e-cigarette authority is limited to nicotine derived from tobacco, which means the synthetic nicotine in products made by companies such as Puff Bar is beyond its purview. A fast-tracked spending bill that Congress is expected to pass by Friday includes a provision that would close that escape hatch by redefining “tobacco products” to include products that have nothing to do with tobacco.

“At a time when FDA is under scrutiny from multiple federal courts for unlawful regulatory overreach on nicotine, handing the agency even more powers to prevent Americans from switching to vaping is like handing car keys and a bottle opener to the town drunk,” says Amanda Wheeler, president of the American Vapor Manufacturers Association, in a press release. “This legislation is so absurd that it will extend FDA’s reach to products that have no actual, physical connection to tobacco whatsoever. This bill ought to be called the Cigarette Protection Act, because the indisputable outcome will be countless more Americans pushed away from nicotine vaping and back into combustible smoking.”

Read full article here.

Jacob Sullum – Reason – 2022-03-08.

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