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January 2, 2020

Trump Administration Flavor Ban Will Target Pods Only

The FDA will issue guidance soon that bans pod- and cartridge-based vaping products that contain flavors other than tobacco and menthol, the Wall Street Journal reported late Tuesday. The move has been the subject of intense rumors since just before Christmas.

The action will not apply to open-system products like bottled e-liquid and mods.

The move is described by White House insiders as a compromise between the complete flavor ban some Trump administration officials (and Trump family members) want, and the hands-off approach Trump campaign officials have sought. The administration announced a ban on all flavored products in September, then backed off its plan after grassroots opposition from vapers and small businesses appeared to threaten Trump’s reelection chances.

The ban will mostly affect RJ Reynolds (Vuse), Imperial Tobacco (Blu), and independent e-cigarette pioneer NJOY. All three companies sell pod- and cartridge-based products in fruit flavors, mostly in c-stores and gas stations. Convenience store market leader JUUL stopped selling flavors other than tobacco and menthol last year.

The action is a temporary reprieve for vape shops and online e-liquid sellers. While it may appear to be a victory for open systems, all manufacturers still face a May deadline to submit premarket tobacco applications (PMTAs) or remove products from the market. The deadline, imposed by a federal judge last year, is the subject of a lawsuit by the Vapor Technology Association (VTA), and an appeal by the FDA.

The FDA guidance being announced soon is unlikely to address the PMTA deadline, or a separate PMTA path for open system products—something small manufacturers have called for. It probably will simply be notice that FDA will use its enforcement discretion to allow vape retailers to continue to sell deemed open flavored products for the time being, which means it is merely a postponement of the PMTA death sentence imposed by the FDA Deeming Rule.

Vaping360 will have complete coverage of the new FDA guidance when it is announced.

Smokers created vaping without any help from the tobacco industry or anti-smoking crusaders, and vapers have the right to keep innovating to help themselves. My goal is to provide clear, honest information about the challenges vaping faces from lawmakers, regulators, and brokers of disinformation. I recently joined the CASAA board, but my opinions aren’t necessarily CASAA’s, and vice versa. You can find me on Twitter @whycherrywhy

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John J. BenenatiEd BNora M.Anthony BlakemoreJim McDonald Recent comment authors
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Anthony Blakemore
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Anthony Blakemore

Time to vote the MORON out.

Nora M.
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Nora M.

Vaping saved my life.

Andrey Janishewskiy
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Andrey Janishewskiy

I’m always tormented by the question, what is “Tobacco Taste” from the point of view of legislators?
Because not one of the flavors is not as diverse as tobacco.
BLACK HONEY – tobacco flavor, RY4 is also tobacco. I came across tobacco liquids that I wondered, “Where’s the tobacco?” The Chinese offer about 200 types of tobacco flavors. So what can and can’t?

Ed B
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Ed B

Well the top ranking American official in America made the final rules.Lets see how long the whining from anti vaping lasts.. Seriously!Does it ever end?The new rules are pretty concrete clear enough to me so why doesn’t the rest of the world get the same picture

Ed B
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Ed B

You’d think that with all the crazy things going on in the world that governments and politicians could find something better to waste taxpayers money on other than trying ban vaping.Pissess me off because in part it’s part of my tax payers dollars they are waisting.I am still able to purchase my ejuice where I live.Its crazy!!2 separate taxes.A $800 vaping tax plus a separate note tax!!Not that it’s affecting me much..Eleven dollars increase from what I used to pay.W as $40..00 for three 30 ml bottles of juice.Now $5120 for 4 ml bottles

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