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Thursday, September 17, 2015

R.J. Reynolds Must Stop Selling Four Products

In an unprecedented move, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ordered a major tobacco company to stop selling certain products, NPR reports. On Tuesday, the agency ordered the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company to stop selling four products:
  • Camel Bold Crush
  • Vantage Tech 13
  • Pall Mall Deep Set Recessed Filter Regular
  • Pall Mall Deep Set Recessed Filter Menthol
"These decisions were based on a rigorous, science-based review designed to protect the public from the harms caused by tobacco use," Mitch Zeller, director of the FDA's Center for Tobacco Products, said in a statement. "The agency will continue to review product submissions and exercise its legal authority and consumer protection duty to remove products from the market when they fail to meet the public health bar set forth under law." 

This is the first time the FDA has ordered a major tobacco company to stop selling a particular cigarette. The decision stems from the company's inability to prove that the aforementioned cigarettes were no more dangerous than other brands, according to the article. R.J. Reynolds failed to prove that the four cigarettes do not expose smokers to:
  • More Harmful Chemicals
  • Higher Levels of Menthol
  • New Ingredients
“The scientific basis for these four decisions include a failure to demonstrate that increased yields of harmful or potentially harmful constituents, higher levels of menthol, and/or the addition of new ingredients in the currently marketed products – when compared to the predicate products – do not raise different questions of public health,” the FDA stated. 

In 2009, Congress gave the FDA authority to regulate cigarettes, the article reports. The makers of any new tobacco product must show that it poses no more risks to smokers than cigarettes released before Feb. 15, 2007.

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