A U.S regulatory body announced plans on Friday to cut nicotine in cigarettes to what it calls non-addictive levels, designed to encourage smokers to use less harmful options like e-cigarettes.
The Food and Drug Administration released a roadmap to lower deaths caused by tobacco-related disease.
Each year, over 480,000 deaths in the U.S. are caused by tobacco, according to the FDA.
Not since 53 years ago when then-Surgeon General Luther L. Terry stunned the public that cigarette smoking is a dangerous habit that the U.S. government has taken such strong action against the tobacco industry.
“Congress has made clear that FDA has this authority,” FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said. “As I see it, taking the next step and addressing nicotine is not just within our authority, it’s an enormous public health opportunity and falls squarely within FDA’s mission.”
During the same announcement, the FDA also said it will delay the review of e-cigarettes on the market for safety from 2018 to 2022 — a major victory for e-cig makers.
Conservative Tribune reports:
Gottlieb’s plan will likely provoke a great deal of backlash from those Americans who feel as if Big Government has slowly but surely been eroding their rights with its litany of overburdensome and wholly unnecessary regulations.
From trying to reduce soft drink consumption via soda taxes to forcing tobacco companies to alter their products in a way not beneficial to their bottom line, government at all levels sometimes seems hellbent on infringing on the rights of both businesses and individual consumers, the latter of whom should be allowed to decide on their own what products they want to buy.