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BREAKING: Portions of the FDA deeming regulations extended by another 3-months

Posted by Matt Rowland on

Just last night, social media was flooded by news of a surprise announcement by Lindsay Tobias, a Policy Analyst for the Center for Tobacco Products, which grants the vaping industry another 3-month extension to comply with portions of the FDA deeming regulations.  A letter has surfaced from Tobias which clearly defines the new compliance date while offering very little reasons for the unexpected extension. The new date for registration of products with the FDA is now November 8, 2018.

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is announcing information about the outstanding compliance deadlines related to the May 2016 final rule that extended the agency’s authority to additional tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, cigars, hookah tobacco and pipe tobacco, among others…”
“This extension will allow new leadership at the FDA and the Department of Health and Human Services additional time to more fully consider issues raised by the final rule that are now the subject of multiple lawsuits in federal court.”

Did AG Jeff Sessions have a role in the FDA extension?

Why the sudden change of heart? According to TheCigAuthority, the Cigar Association of America (CAA), Cigar Rights of America (CRA), and the International Premium Cigar and Pipe Retailers Association (IPCPR) filed suit against the FDA challenging the deeming regulations as they relate to pipe tobacco and cigars.  Apparently, the case made quite an impression with Trump’s newly appointed Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

“The United States Department of Justice informed the court that new leadership at the United States Department of Health and Human Services wish additional time to more fully consider the issues raised in the Rule.  For example, the deadline for submission of product listings, previously June 30, 2017, will now be September 30, 2017.  The three month extension applies to all future scheduled deadlines whether they fall in 2017, 2018, or later. “

This is not the first time that portions of the deadlines for compliance has been pushed back. The most recent extension occurred on December 9, 2016 just weeks after Trump won the Presidency.  And much like the last time, the vaping industry is once again hopefully optimistic that this latest delay is a positive sign that the FDA deeming regulations will finally be repealed by a more vape-friendly Republican Administration.

Related Article:  FDA EXTENDS DEADLINE FOR DEEMING REGULATIONS AMID RUMORS OF A TRUMP REVERSAL

The San Diego Union Tribune reports that the November 8 deadline applies specifically to the related registration deadline for manufacturers of vaping products and e-liquids.  Other portions of the regulations also received a 90-day reprieve.

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has given manufacturers of electronic cigarette equipment a three-month reprieve from registering their products.”
“Other deadlines under the FDA’s rule deeming e-cigarette devices and liquids to be tobacco products are also delayed three months, but the registration deadline was the closest.”

Meanwhile, Greg Conley of the American Vaping Association (AVA) also quickly tweeted the good news to the vaping community on Monday evening.

 

While this 90-day reprieve provides a bit of breathing room for the American vaping industry, it also falls directly on the heels of a major political setback.  Just hours before the Tobias announcement regarding the new FDA extension, news that the Cole-Bishop Amendment had been blocked from the upcoming fiscal budget hit the Internet.  While the extension is largely heralded as a possible sign of future positive change for the vaping industry, the multiple failures of the Cole-Bishop Amendment to gain Congressional support is further proof that the War on Vaping is still very much alive.


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