Will the FDA soon be taking charge of e-cigarettes?
A new law in 2009 gave the FDA the power to regulate the tobacco industry (including cigarettes, self-rolled tobacco and smokeless tobacco); the government agency is now ready to regulate the new e-cigarette industry.
The White House Office of Management and Budget has just received the FDA’s regulation proposals for approval. The office will determine what effects the proposed regulations would have on both the industry and society and make the society to come up with specific recommendations.
Following their introduction in 2007, e-cigarettes have rapidly risen in popularity because they enable smokers to quit smoking real cigarettes. Statistical research reveals that the rate of smoking has dropped from 43% in 1965 to the present rate of 18%. But exactly how do these new e-cigarettes work?
E-cigarettes are powered by a battery. The battery heats a coil that converts a combination of vegetable glycerin and propylene glycol into a cloud of vapor. The e-cigarettes do not create ash. Furthermore, the smoke is reported to do significantly less damage to the smokers’ bodies.
Unfortunately, e-cigarettes have given youngsters the impression that smoking is now “socially acceptable”. Studies have shown that the number of children smoking e-cigarettes “doubled between 2011 and 2012. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not currently regulate e-cigarettes because they are tobacco-free.
Manufacturers like LOGIC Technology, Lorillard Inc. and NJOY control 80% of the $1.5 billion industry. They agree that this federal oversight could create difficulties for them to create and introduce new products. They also claim the FDA could negatively impact small businesses. The biggest concern here, of course, is that those who are currently using e-cigarettes might lose access to the e-cigarettes and resume their use of tobacco products.
An attorney and lobbyist for the Electronic Cigarette Industry Group, Bryan Haynes, stated that allowing the FDA to regulate the e-cigarettes industry could hinder the continued product research and development. At present, the FDA has 4,000 applications for modified or new products already waiting to be approved. Online sources indicate that the White House will probably green light the recommendations to permit the FDA to regulate the e-cigarette industry.
(Image courtesy of BuyE-cigarettes)