WASHINGTON, D.C. – The upcoming Congressional omnibus budget bill, set to be voted on later this week, introduces provisions which give the Food and Drug Administration authority to regulate synthetic nicotine products as a tobacco product.
Michael Landl, director of the global advocacy group for harm reduction, World Vapers’ Alliance, believes that this regulation will harm current smokers and vapers alike:
“The bill threatens the availability of less harmful alternatives to smoking such as vaping. There is a disaster for public health looming. By putting thousands of vape shops out of business, many vapers will be pushed back to smoking. Targeting the exact product that allowed them to quit smoking makes no sense. Synthetic nicotine is an innovative way to decrease harmful effects of smoking and provide people with an alternative to traditional cigarettes,” said Landl.
“The goal of harm reduction is to reduce adverse consequences among people who aren’t able to quit smoking. It has proven effective in many countries around the world and helped millions of people to quit smoking. The land of the free should follow these countries instead of turning into a nanny state.”
Synthetic nicotine products will be subject to the Premarket Tobacco Application (PMTA) process requiring companies to apply for the authorization to remain in the market, creating a significant challenge for new e-cigarette companies to stay in business and consequently making it harder for consumers to obtain vaping products.
“Many companies do not have the resources needed to file the Premarket Tobacco Application which is required under the FDA regulation for tobacco products. This bill will bring many negative consequences for tobacco harm reduction efforts, potentially limiting access to vaping products and forcing ex-smokers to return to cigarettes,” added Landl.