The Food and Drug Administration said Thursday it has issued a ban on flavored vaping products, with the exception of tobacco and menthol.
Under the new rule, companies that do not stop the distribution of fruit and mint flavors within 30 days are at risk of regulatory action by the FDA, the agency said.
“The United States has never seen an epidemic of substance use arise as quickly as our current epidemic of youth use of e-cigarettes,” Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said in a statement Thursday. “HHS is taking a comprehensive, aggressive approach to enforcing the law passed by Congress, under which no e-cigarettes are currently on the market legally.”
The FDA’s decision comes amid a rise in teen e-cigarette use and a deadly lung illness linked to vaping that has taken the lives of 55 people across 27 states. The Trump administration was expected this week to issue a ban on flavored e-cigarette pods and flavored liquid nicotine products.
The ban will have a limited impact on vaping industry leader Juul, which, under intense scrutiny, has already halted the sale of its flavors in the U.S., excluding menthol, Virginia tobacco and classic tobacco. It will likely be a blow to Juul rival, NJOY, which looked to benefit from Juul’s flavor retreat with the sale its own blueberry flavors in stores.
–CNBC’s Lauren Hirsch contributed to this report.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.