FDA Regulation Approved By U.S. House, Senate Committee

In National News on May 21, 2009 at 8:43 am

The U.S. House and a Senate sub-committee have now both passed versions of bills that would allow the FDA to regulate tobacco products. The Senate version now up for vote would also allow regulation of tobacco candy — dissolvable tobacco products. If the Senate approves the bill,  the House and Senate would have to work out any differences before sending the legislation to President Barack Obama, who supports the effort.

According to a Gannett article, the measure would require the new Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee to study the public health effects of tobacco candy, particularly the risks to children, and report to the FDA within two years. Right now, we don’t know what is in these products or how harmful or safe they may be. Also, according to public health experts, this candies are designed to target children, not just smokers looking for alternatives.

Some people say they are no more dangerous than NRT gum or losenges. But we know what is in FDA-approved NRT; we don’t know what is in tobacco candy. If we can find out, then we can make a call on the safety of using tobacco candy.

The proposed legislation would also restrict marketing to children, dictate package warnings, and control nicotine content.

From a Reuters article:

Reaction from tobacco companies has been mixed, with the nation’s largest cigarette maker, Altria Group Inc’s Philip Morris unit, backing the plan amid opposition from several smaller makers such as Reynolds American Inc’s R.J. Reynolds Tobacco unit and Lorillard Inc’s Lorillard Tobacco Co. Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids President Matthew Myers, whose advocacy group is one of many backing the bill, applauded the committee’s vote.


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