Skip to main content

The Trump administration will move to ban flavored e-cigarettes

Amid vaping-related lung illnesses and multiple deaths around the United States, President Donald Trump’s administration is gearing up to ban flavored e-cigarettes nationwide, officials announced Wednesday.

U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said that the Trump administration is preparing the ban and will soon issue new regulatory guidance over vapes. Azar said that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has started to finalize plans to take flavored e-cigarettes off of the market entirely. 

Related Videos

According to Azar, the FDA would take several weeks to approve and finish the process, followed by an additional 30 days before any ban would be effective.

“Nobody knows too much about it, but they do know it’s causing a lot of problems,” Trump said about vaping during a White House appearance Wednesday. “People think it’s an easy solution to cigarettes but it turns out that it has its own difficulties.”

President Trump: "We have a problem in our country. It's a new problem. It's a problem nobody really thought about too much a few years ago and it's called vaping, especially vaping as it pertains to innocent children."

— CSPAN (@cspan) September 11, 2019

Azar said that 5 million children in the United States use e-cigarettes, and the ban on kid-friendly flavors is an attempt to reduce that number.

“Not only is it a problem overall, but really specifically with respect for children,” Trump said Wednesday. “We may very well have to do something very, very strong about it.”

Six vaping-related deaths have been confirmed in six states. Authorities believe certain vaping products — including THC-infused cartridges — can cause rapid and severe lung-related illnesses that ultimately lead to these deaths. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said that as of September 6, more than 450 possible vaping-related diseases had been reported spanning 33 states.

Officials are looking at vitamin E oil that is added to some THC vaping cartridges as a possible cause. Patients have reported a variety of symptoms, such as shortness of breath, chest pain, coughing, fatigue, and fever. 

The CDC said that it, along with the FDA, is investigating the outbreak of “severe pulmonary disease associated with e-cigarette product (devices, liquids, refill pods, and/or cartridges) use.”

The FDA plans to implement new restrictions on e-cigarettes and other forms of vaping in 2021. 

While the Trump administration would call for a nationwide ban, some U.S. states and cities have already banned the sale of flavored e-cigarettes. On September 3, Michigan became the first state to ban flavored electronic cigarettes in response to increased vaping in youth and rising health concerns for all of its residents.

In June, San Francisco became the first city to ban all e-cigarette sales, flavored or otherwise, entirely.

While six deaths compared to the average 480,000 CDC reported cigarette smoking-related deaths don’t necessarily compare, studies about the negative effects of cigarettes have been documented for years, while vaping studies that have been conducted are less than five years old. 

Just as cigarette smoking was once considered OK decades ago before research proved otherwise, vaping is the latest health concern that needs more research. 

Experts say that it’s too early to tell about the long-term effects vaping has on the body. 

A study conducted on vaping by the American Journal of Preventative Medicine took a look specifically at Juul products. The study looked at flavoring chemicals known as acetals that are added into flavored e-cigarette products. 

According to NPR, acetals can be found in small amounts of food and other commercial products, but the effects of inhaling such chemicals are not yet fully known and are still being studied. 

A Juul spokesperson told Digital Trends, “We strongly agree with the need for aggressive category-wide action on flavored products. We will fully comply with the final FDA policy when effective.”

Editors' Recommendations

Juul patents an A.I. vape to help people quit nicotine
juul labs ceo kevin burns resigns electronic cigarette vaping vaporettes e v3

Juul has been at the center of the vaping illness epidemic for its easy-to-use e-cigarette devices but now, a new patent suggests that the company might be looking to make a product to help people quit nicotine. 

A patent application for a new vaping product was filed by Juul last summer and was recently made public, as first reported by The Logic. The patent, called Devices and Methods for Cessation of Nicotine Addiction, is essentially an A.I.-powered vape that helps users quit nicotine by delivering fewer nicotine amounts through a vaping device by learning a user's smoking habits over time. 

Read more
New lawsuit accuses Juul of targeting kids on Nick Jr. and Cartoon Network sites

Juul has been hit with another lawsuit over its marketing practices toward minors. The new lawsuit alleges that the e-cigarette company advertised on such websites as Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., Seventeen Magazine, and Cartoon Network. 

The lawsuit was filed on Wednesday by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey and focuses on the company’s advertising campaign in 2015. The suit alleges that Juul purchased advertising space on websites geared toward children and minors. Aside from the companies above, the lawsuit also mentions and

Read more
Company uses genetic secrets of your DNA to spur healthier eating, longer life
dnanudge dna shopping ces2020 green

This story is part of our continuing coverage of CES 2020, including tech and gadgets from the showroom floor.

It’s all too easy to blame genetics for our body type and size -- especially if we're disappointed with it -- as well as for the likelihood of developing serious health conditions in life. But what if you could leverage those same genetics to help understand how you’re affected by things you eat and your lifestyle choices in order to improve your health? That’s the concept behind DnaNudge, a company with a fascinating and high-tech, yet surprisingly simple method of making sure what you put in your body is doing you good.
Deep in your DNA

Read more