ACSH is joining several public health and interest groups as an amicus, or friend of the court, to appeal the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) decision to treat e-cigarettes as drug delivery systems rather than as tobacco products. E-cigarettes are a recently developed nicotine alternative that mimics tobacco smoking without the inhalation or emission of the harmful tobacco combustion products that come from smoking cigarettes.
In January, the FDA tried to block the importation and sale of the e-cigarette because they consider it an unapproved drug delivery system. The e-cigarette marketers, NJoy and Smoking Everywhere, are currently appealing an injunction that would prevent e-cigarette vendors from continuing to import and sell them.
"ACSH agrees with the e-cigarette companies who argue that the FDA should regulate their e-cigarettes as tobacco products, which ironically would subject them to the less stringent FDA standards for tobacco products. The basis for this," explains ACSH s Jeff Stier, "is that the Congress, in trying to give FDA broad authority, defined 'tobacco products' as any product derived from tobacco. And the nicotine in e-cigarettes comes from the best source of nicotine: the tobacco plant."
Ironically, one of the key benefits of e-cigarettes is that they are not tobacco, yet we are simply holding the FDA to their own standard and are doing so to give addicted cigarette smokers a less harmful alternative," stated ACSH s Dr. Gilbert Ross.