U.S. - flavored cigarettes ban looms, how do you define 'characterizing flavor'..

September 19, 2009 - The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a letter regarding sales of flavored cigarettes becoming illegal on Tuesday, September 22, 2009, providing the industry with more specific direction. Effective September 22, 2009, cigarettes that contain certain characterizing flavors are considered adulterated under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA or the Act), as amended by the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (FSPTCA).

The removal from the market of cigarettes that contain certain characterizing flavors is an important step in FDA’s efforts to reduce the burden of illness and death caused by tobacco products. But the new regulations apply only to ‘characterizing’ flavors; so while clove cigarettes will be banned, those that use, say, chocolate in a non-characterizing way presumably will be permitted.

Menthol is not included in the ban; so while mint will be banned, menthol will be permitted. In fact, mint will presumably become menthol.

The FSPTCA provides FDA with regulatory authority over the manufacture, marketing, and distribution of tobacco products. Specifically, section 907(a)(1)(A) of the Act, as amended by the FSPTCA, establishes a tobacco product standard special rule for cigarettes that states in part: ‘…a cigarette or any of its component parts (including the tobacco, filter, or paper) shall not contain, as a constituent (including a smoke constituent) or additive, an artificial or natural flavor (other than tobacco or menthol) or an herb or spice, including strawberry, grape, orange, clove, cinnamon, pineapple, vanilla, coconut, licorice, cocoa, chocolate, cherry, or coffee, that is a characterizing flavor of the tobacco product or tobacco smoke.’

Maine - law banning flavored tobacco products - July 1, 2009..
‘An Act Concerning Certain Flavored Cigarettes and Flavored Cigars and Hard Snuff’ "Characterizing flavor" was defined as a distinguishable taste or aroma that is imparted to tobacco or tobacco smoke either prior to or during consumption, other than a taste or aroma from tobacco, menthol, clove, coffee, nuts or peppers.

Reference: Menthol in, mint out – what’s in a name?, Tobacco Reporter, 9/17/2009.

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