Will Puff Bar Force FDA to Regulate Synthetic Nicotine?
Puff Bar is back, and its new Synthetic Nicotine-based e-liquid could push Congress or the FDA to address the long-festering issue of vaping products made with nicotine not derived from tobacco.
The gray market Puff Bar device and its shadowy owners have succeeded in the retail market by ignoring FDA regulations and building a huge distribution network in traditional tobacco outlets like convenience stores and gas stations. In the process, Puff Bar has become the epitome of evil to anti-vaping groups like the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and Truth Initiative.
The new Puff products are reinvigorating those tobacco control groups’ long campaign to pressure the FDA to regulate Synthetic Nicotine. They’ve also inspired U.S. Representative Raja Krishnamoorthi to demand that Acting FDA Commissioner Janet Woodcock shut down the Puff Bar manufacturers, whoever they may be.
“We encourage you to go beyond simply shutting down DS Technology Licensing,” wrote the three-term Illinois congressman. “FDA must use all tools at its disposal, including seizure, injunction, and criminal prosecution, to hold accountable the individuals responsible for these flagrant violations of law. If individuals caught breaking the law face no penalty, and are able to keep ill-gotten gains, the law will continue to be ignored. This is the opportunity to set a new standard going forward.”
Of course, the whole issue of unregulated nicotine hangs on whether the new Puff Bars actually do contain “tobacco-free” nicotine. If the Puff Bar owners are fibbing—which can be determined through a chemical analysis of the products—they will be subject to FDA sanctions, although probably not the keel-haulings and executions Rep. Krishnamoorthi is hoping for.
“The FDA is aware that Puff Bar’s web site says that they are offering products for sale with claims they contain ‘tobacco-free nicotine,’” an FDA spokesperson told The Hill.
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