FDA’s Rejection of Two Vuse Menthol… | Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
sign up

FDA’s Rejection of Two Vuse Menthol E-Cigarette Products Is a Significant Step to Protect Kids

Statement of Matthew L. Myers, President, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
January 24, 2023

WASHINGTON, D.C.  – The FDA’s announcement today that it has denied marketing applications for two Vuse menthol e-cigarette products is a significant step to protect our nation’s kids. This decision recognizes that menthol is a flavor that attracts and is widely used by kids, and menthol products have played a major role in the ongoing crisis of youth e-cigarette use. According to the 2022 National Youth Tobacco Survey (2022 NYTS), 28.2% of high school e-cigarette users report using menthol products. The survey also found that Vuse is one of the most popular e-cigarette brands among youth, with 23.8% of high school users reporting using Vuse in the past 30 days.

Today’s announcement marks the second time the FDA has denied marketing applications for menthol-flavored e-cigarettes, following its announcement in October that it had denied marketing applications for several of Logic’s menthol-flavored products. Critically, today’s FDA announcement once again includes a strong and clear statement that menthol, like other flavors, appeals to kids: “Existing evidence demonstrates that non-tobacco-flavored e-cigarettes, including menthol flavored e-cigarettes, have a known and substantial risk with regard to youth appeal, uptake and use; in contrast, data indicate tobacco-flavored e-cigarettes do not have the same appeal to youth and therefore do not pose the same degree of risk.”

Youth e-cigarette use remains a serious public health problem in the United States. The 2022 NYTS found that over 2.5 million U.S. kids still use e-cigarettes and 46% of high school e-cigarette users report frequent or daily use, powerful evidence that they are becoming addicted to the high-nicotine products now dominating the market. Flavored products have driven this youth addiction crisis, with 85% of youth e-cigarette users reporting that they use flavored products. 

Today’s announcement indicates important progress in the FDA’s ongoing and overdue review of marketing applications for e-cigarettes. While the FDA has rejected marketing applications for over 1 million flavored e-cigarettes, it has yet to make decisions regarding many of the most popular brands.  To protect our nation’s kids and truly end the youth e-cigarette epidemic, the FDA must complete its review of e-cigarette marketing applications without further delay and clear the market of all flavored e-cigarettes, including all menthol-flavored products.