FDA Clarifies Flavored Cigarette Ban

In a media conference, the agency sheds new light on the fate of tobacco products.

The FDA held a media briefing this yesterday and has posted documents on the FDA Web site issuing additional information regarding the ban on flavored cigarettes, authorized by the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act that was signed into law in June.

According to the new documents, cigarettes containing an artificial or natural flavor (excluding tobacco or menthol) that is a characterizing flavor are banned as of today, Sept. 22.

The banned flavors include herb, spice, strawberry, grape, orange, clove, cinnamon, pineapple, vanilla, coconut, licorice, cocoa, chocolate, cherry and coffee.

Loose tobacco and roll-your-own tobacco intended to be used in cigarettes can continue to be sold as long as the tobacco does not contain a characterizing flavor, such as those mentioned above, that is banned under the new FDA law.

"Flavored cigarettes attract and allure kids into lifetime addiction," said U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Assistant Secretary for Health Howard K. Kohl, M.D., M.P.H. "FDA’s ban on these cigarettes will break that cycle for more than 3,600 young people who start smoking daily."

The FDA is still examining options of regulating menthol cigarettes and other flavored tobacco products other than cigarettes.

Cigarette rolling papers and cigarette filters for use in roll-your-own cigarettes that contain a characterizing flavor are also banned. Only cigarette rolling papers and cigarette filters that do not contain a characterizing flavor are legal to sell .

Pipe tobacco, that according to the FDA is bona fide pipe tobacco, is not banned.

As far as flavored little cigars, the FDA stated-similar to what it said in previously-that "the ban applies to all tobacco products with certain characterizing flavors that meet the definition of a ‘cigarette’ in section 900(3) of the FDCA [Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act] even if they are not labeled as "cigarettes" or are labeled as cigars or as some other product."

During the conference call, a reporter from the New York Times asked if the flavored cigarette ban includes a ban on flavored little cigars, the National Association of Tobacco Outlets (NATO) reported. Dr. Lawrence Deyton of the FDA said the issue of a ban on other flavored tobacco products will be studied by the FDA in the near future.

The FDA is taking several steps to enforce the ban on flavored cigarettes. A letter recently sent to the tobacco industry provided information about the law and explained that any company who continues to make, ship or sell such products may be subject to FDA enforcement actions.

In the advisory, the FDA clarified that it will "issue Warning Letters to firms to notify them that they or their products are in violation of the law and to give them the opportunity to come into compliance," before confiscating banned tobacco products, handing out fines or bringing criminal prosecutions.

Editor’s note: See related Article / Editorial that includes links to definitions and the FDA letter and the new law.
Clove Cigarettes Banned as "Flavored" – Are they Coming for Your Pipe Tobacco Next?

5 Responses

  • that really sux’s i smoke cherry flavored cigarellos in many different name brands. i’m a heavy flavored cigar and pipe smoker. to me it sounds like the FDA desided to do this ban awhile ago but they desided to wait and are just now inforcing it, since the current cost hike in regular tobacco caused most regular smokers to switch to cigarello’s to excape the hike. to me it dose not matter much either way i prefer the flavored cigars it adds a little something extra to smoking and makes it more enjoyable. hopefuly they wont mess with my pipe tobacco tho nothing compares to a really great pipe tobacco the aroma and flavor its like a little bit of heaven.

  • They keep saying they are only targeting cigarettes. The polarized reaction on both the consumer side and business side is interesting to me. Some brush this off as nothing since it is just applicable to cigarettes, while others, like myself are quite concerned about the “slippery slope” … wondering what’s next and when will they come for my pipe tobacco?
    You can read a lot more about this here:

  • Thats seriously messed up, soon there going to go after cigars and pipe tobacco. THey need to understand that the fact that the cigarette is flavored dosent factor into most kids decision to smoke. Kids just think it looks cool and think that they will be the one that dosent have any health problems even if they smoke. I just hope that they realize that not many kids smoke cigars and almost none smoke pipes, that way they can leave us alone.

  • The more taxes, bans and laws that keep slipping through makes me wonder what country this is…..What happened to freedom??? Who is free anymore?
    The government was NOT put together to be our parents! These people that THINK it is their right to add new taxes and laws need to stick to doing their jobs and leave the parenting to mom and dad.
    Maybe there are just too many of them on the pay roll and they have TOO much time on their hands and if that is the case, maybe we need to cut jobs in government so that these people can stay focused on REAL issues! Cutting some of those cushy jobs would save tax payers a heap and the budget would soon correct itself rather than keep taxing the heck out of us!
    I fear that soon, people living in communist countries will have more freedom than Americans…..How messed up would that be? We are going to other countries to fight for THEIR freedom, right? Who will fight for freedom?

  • This is ridiculous, because you have to be 18 to purchase flavored tobacco products anyway, just like regular or menthol cigarettes. It’s not going to make any damn difference. If kids want to smoke, I doubt the first thought/enticement in their mind is “I should start smoking because some cigarettes taste like candy”. Fucking retarded.