This past week, the Food and Drug Administration proposed a new set of regulations regarding the sale and distribution of e-cigs.
The agency proposed rules that call for strict regulation for e-cigs, cigars, pipe tobacco, nicotine gels, water pipe tobacco and hookahs. Currently, the FDA only has authority over cigarettes, smokeless tobacco and roll-your-own tobacco.
A New Set of Rules
After the recommendations for the new set of regulations are finalized following a 75-day public comment period, the age limit to buy the products is expected to be at least 18. There is always the possibility for individual states to set it higher. The KRAVE® brand is regularly distributed to facilities, such as gas stations where the buyer must present identification before purchasing one of the brand’s products.
In addition, manufacturers must register all of their products and ingredients with the FDA. New products would only be able to be marketed after an FDA review, and scientific evidence would be absolutely needed before making any claims of direct or implied that the product is a safe alternative.
Once any proposed rules are finalized and the public comment period ends, all e-cig and vaporizer manufacturers will have twenty four months to submit an application that allows their product to stay on the market or to submit a new product application entirely.
Rising in Popularity
The Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention reported that in high school students alone, the percentage of students who reported ever using an e-cig had more than doubled in between 2011 and 2012.
With the rise in popularity of e-cigs, more and more calls to local poison control centers nationwide have been made. Poison control centers logged about two hundred and fifteen calls in the month of February for e-cigs alone, according to a new CDC report. 51% of those calls involved children.
How Safe is My E-Cig?
To put it bluntly, the purchase of e-cigs comes down to “buyer beware.” A vice is still a vice. Although they are a much cleaner alternative, e-cigs still contain small amounts of nicotine. It is the hope of many that the FDA’s new regulations on tobacco products will make a major contribution to the overall health of Americans.