The federal government on Thursday moved to regulate the e-cigarette industry – including banning electronic cigarette sales to minors – and required all tobacco products to undergo government review, even many already on the market.
E-cigarettes, along with similarly categorized devices such as vaporizers and vape pens, will be regulated as tobacco products because they use a liquid containing nicotine.
The new rule from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) implements the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act passed by Congress in 2009. Why has it taken so long to get this rule passed, if Congress acted six years ago? Well, according to Kaiser Health News: “In December 2010, the U.S. Court of Appeals ruled the FDA could not regulate electronic cigarettes as a drug or a device but only as a tobacco product. That meant the government could oversee their marketing but not restrict their sale, except to minors. It’s unclear why the FDA needed more than five additional years to issue a final rule.”