This week the FDA began to use one of main powers Congress gave it when approved in 2009 tobacco control law and now new tobacco products can be sold to consumers.
The FDA has the authority to regulate everything from cigarettes to smokeless tobacco products. Before the law was adopted, companies could launch on the market new tobacco products without approval of any federal regulator.
Since the law was adopted, the FDA has got almost 4,000 applications for tobacco products that companies claimed were “substantially equivalent” to ones already on the tobacco market, but the agency had not took action on any of them.
Recently, the FDA had approved applications for 2 types of non-menthol cigarettes produced by Lorillard after a research showing that they are safe for people.
At the same time, the FDA rejected 4 other applications making refernce to potential health problems caused by some ingredients and a lack of detailed information about product designs. The FDA refused to name the specific companies and products.
This agency action leaves a hole in the backlog of tobacco product applications. For example, one have been awaiting a ruling for more than 2 years.
The agency representatives say it is an important step forward the FDA’s aim to lower the number of people suffering from diseases caused by tobacco consumption. It is the first time when government brings regulation based on scientific research to manufacturers of tobacco products.
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