The US Food and Drug Administration announced new proposed regulations for e-cigarette products Thursday.
"This proposed rule is the latest step in our efforts to make the next generation tobacco-free," said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
According to the proposal, e-cigarette manufacturers will have to start registering with the FDA and include health warnings and ingredients on products. Companies will also have to stop selling to minors, and stop promoting e-cigarettes as a healthier alternative to smoking until the FDA has scientific proof that those claims are true.
“Tobacco remains the leading cause of death and disease in this country. This is an important moment for consumer protection and a significant proposal that if finalized as written would bring FDA oversight to many new tobacco products,” said FDA Commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg, M.D. “Science-based product regulation is a powerful form of consumer protection that can help reduce the public health burden of tobacco use on the American public, including youth.”
Both RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company in Winston-Salem and Lorillard in Greensboro produce lines of e-cigarettes.
“We are currently reviewing the proposed deeming regulation and are not in a position to comment on anything specific at this time. It’s important to note that the issuance of the draft deeming regulation simply begins a process that includes a 75-day public comment period. We will provide comments on the draft regulation and participate in the rulemaking process. Additionally, the issuance of the proposed deeming regulation does not affect the current marketplace for e-cigarettes. We continue to work with the FDA on this and other matters of interest as we believe open lines of communication are the best approach to establishing an effective, science-based regulatory framework for the tobacco industry,” said David Howard, spokesperson for Reynolds American Inc.
The FDA will consider finalizing the proposal after a 75-day comment period.