Chris Hansen, ACS CAN President

ACS CAN President Lisa Lacasse shares her views on the impact of advocacy on the cancer fight.


FDA DeemedŠ—- Now What?

May 12, 2014

Last monthŠ—'s news that the FDA is proposing to regulate all tobacco products was long-awaited and very welcomed by public health advocates. There was lots of news coverage of the proposalŠ—'s release, but whatŠ—'s next? When the proposed rule becomes final, the FDA for the first time will have the authority to regulate dissolveables, gels, hookah tobacco, electronic cigarettes, cigars and pipe tobacco. Manufacturers of these products will have to submit ingredient listings to the FDA, remove descriptors such as Š—“lightŠ— and Š—“mildŠ— and other claims that imply a lower risk and cease the distribution of free samples. You might have also read in the news that the FDA proposal would also prohibit these tobacco products from being sold to people under age 18, ban them from most vending machines and require that warning statements appear on their packaging and advertisements. These are important regulations, and they are certainly a step in the right direction toward keeping these products out of the hands of kids. But we were disappointed to see that the FDA didnŠ—'t propose a strong approach to manage flavorings added to these products that make them attractive to youth, or the egregious advertising weŠ—'ve been seeing. Now, we have an opportunity to express those concerns and any other thoughts during the official comment period for the proposal. One question the FDA posed that we intend to address is whether or not premium cigars should be regulated differently than other cigars. Our answer is they shouldnŠ—'t. There is no such thing as a safe tobacco product Š—– meaning no tobacco product should be exempt from FDA regulation. WeŠ—'re calling on the FDA to expeditiously review all of the comments filed over the next couple of months and release its final rule within a year so the agency can move forward with addressing flavorings and advertising. We cannot afford any more delay given that youth are trying new products, such as little cigars and e-cigarettes, at increasing rates. A final regulation without administrative delays is crucial to saving lives, keeping kids from becoming addicted and ending the scourge of tobacco in our lifetime.