Former FDA Official Says Menthol Ban Tests FDA's Authority

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposals to ban menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars will test its authority to create new product standards for the tobacco industry. As the agency works to finalize the proposals, it should weigh the public health standard it uses and analyze the potential for more tobacco products to enter the black market, attorneys who specialize in tobacco control policy say. Under federal law, the FDA can issue tobacco product standards deemed “appropriate for the protection of the public health.” Marc Scheineson, a former agency official, said the FDA “can’t be arbitrary and capricious” in proposing new standards. The leading U.S. tobacco companies are amplifying concerns that U.S. bans on the manufacture and sale of menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars would allow illicit market sellers to flourish. Read more here.

As a reminder, CDA will host two webinars on the FDA proposes rules on flavored tobacco.

  1. FDA’s Proposed Rules on Menthol and Flavored Cigars: What You Need to Know & How to Engage, Today, May 12 at 1pm Eastern Time. The proposed rules are out, so what’s next? Join Shannon Campagna, CDA Policy Advisor, to learn more about the proposed rules and ways to engage on these very important issues. Click here to register.
  2. Tobacco Update: Details on the Proposed Flavor Ban Rules and More, on May 19 at 1pm Eastern Time. This must-attend webinar, presented by Tom Briant of NATO, will provide an update on FDA regulations with focus on the recently released proposed rules prohibiting menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars, PMTA status, cigarette graphic health warnings, the corrective statements litigation with the Department of Justice, state legislation and local ordinance activity. Click here to register.