The is the first approach of its kind in the nation
Annapolis, MD – Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot announced Monday the approach his Field Enforcement Division is taking in prohibiting the sale of certain flavored Electronic Smoking Devices.
Franchot said the new regulation expands the FDA’s current prohibition of flavored e-cigarette cartridges and extends that enforcement to include disposable flavored smoking devices.
“We have used our regulatory authority in the state of Maryland to protect up to 10,000 kids we predict right now that have been addicted to nicotine.” Franchot said.
A task force was created by Franchot last October to study the industry and to consider what legislative action to take. Their final session will be February 17 to discuss recommendations.
Franchot said the prohibition targets unauthorized disposable products with flavor names like Pineapple Lemonade, Berry Gelato, and O.M.G.
“This is a gateway experience for [kids] to become addicted to smoking cigarettes,” Franchot said. “… We have moved swiftly because there’s a tsunami of kids in Maryland that are moving in the direction of these disposable vaping products.”
The Comptroller issues licenses as the state’s tobacco regulator and the Field Enforcement Division will promptly begin inspections and license checks to ensure businesses are complying with the regulations.
The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network issued a statement following Franchot’s announcement, saying the regulations are still not enough to reduce the negative health impact of nicotine products.
The organization supports MD HB3, a bill which would ban the sale of any tobacco product with a taste or smell of fruit, mint, candy or other non-tobacco flavors within the state of Maryland. This ban would include menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars.
By Timothy Young