The Food and Drug Administration is making another attempt at regulating electronic cigarettes and other tobacco products.
On Thursday, the agency proposed rules that call for strict regulation of electronic cigarettes, cigars, pipe tobacco, nicotine gels, water pipe tobacco and hookahs. Currently, the FDA only has regulatory authority over cigarettes, smokeless tobacco and roll-your-own tobacco.
When these recommendations are finalized following a 75-day public comment period, the age limit to buy the products is expected to be at least 18, although individual states could choose to set it higher.
Health warnings would also be required and the sale of the products in vending machines would be prohibited. Initially, the only health warning required for e-cigarettes would be about the potential for addiction to nicotine.
Manufacturers would be required to register all their products and ingredients with the FDA. They would only be able to market new products after an FDA review, and they would need to provide scientific evidence before making any claims of direct or implied risk reduction associated with their product.
Companies would also no longer be allowed to give out free samples.