US government plans to ban flavors used in e-cigarettes

Donald Trump said vaping was not

Secretary Azar says the FDA will soon issue a regulatory notice for the removal of most flavored vaping products from the market.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will develop guidelines to remove from the market all e-cigarette flavours except tobacco, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told reporters at the Oval Office.

While most of existing scientific literature holds that vaping is less toxic than smoking, "the implications for long-term effects on morbidity and mortality are not yet clear", and would require decades of more data and studies to know for certain, said the NAS report.

"The tremendous progress we've made in reducing youth tobacco use in the USA is jeopardized by this onslaught of e-cigarette use", Sharpless said.

Vaping, which has been trendy among young adults and middle age people trying to ween off cigarettes, has been at the forefront of growing health concerns. No single vaping device, ingredient or additive has been identified as the cause.

"Vaping has become a very big business, as I understand it".

"Any tobacco product use, including e-cigarettes, is unsafe for youth".

The announcement comes after parents, health officials and politicians have called for federal action to stem a surge in vaping.

Billionaire and former NY mayor Michael Bloomberg, who on Tuesday announced a $160 million campaign to ban vaping, said the flavor ban was overdue and should come into effect immediately. The vast majority of underage teens consumed fruit, menthol or mint flavors. The new policy would allow the FDA to remove flavored products from the market.

But bans also deprive adults addicted to smoking of a valuable tool to quit, the industry says.

Lately, researchers have been discovering that it's not only those who use vaping products themselves who are harmed - other people in the vicinity can be breathing in "secondhand" fumes, a phenomenon now dubbed "secondhand vaping".

"Finally, the FDA is doing its job", said Sen.

Several former White House officials, including communications aide Josh Raffel, and Johnny DeStefano, who served as counselor to Trump, have gone on to work for Juul.

Most health experts agree that e-cigarettes are safer than smoking tobacco products that contain thousands of chemicals and lead to the death of almost a half-million people a year in the United States.

Juul Labs, which has the biggest share of the US market for e-cigarettes, is one of the country's most richly valued closely held startups. But FDA officials have repeatedly delayed enforcing regulations on them, referencing industry fears that regulation could wipe out thousands of small companies. The agency began policing cigarettes then, but it didn't add e-cigarettes to its portfolio until 2016.

Most experts agree the aerosol from e-cigarettes is less harmful than cigarette smoke since it doesn't contain most of the cancer-causing byproducts of burning tobacco.

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