Dec 27, 2019

FDA officially raises age to buy tobacco to 21

No Smoking and No Vaping sign. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration officially raised the age to buy tobacco in the U.S. from 18 to 21, fulfilling a key portion of the federal spending package that President Trump signed into law last week.

The big picture: The decision comes faster than some expected as the FDA had six months to amend their policies after Trump signed the bill and another 90 days to officially adopt the change. 19 states and the District of Columbia had already put in place laws to raise the minimum buying age for tobacco products — including cigarettes, cigars and e-cigarettes — to 21.

Go deeper: Vitamin E acetate is "strongly linked" to the vaping illnesses

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Vape lobby again targets Trump

Trump during a White House session on youth vaping in November 2019. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

The lobbying group Vapor Technology Association is targeting President Trump with a six-figure ad buy in Palm Beach County, Fla., opposing a national ban on flavored e-cigarettes, a VTA spokesperson confirmed to Axios.

Why it matters: As Trump weighs whether to move forward with a proposed ban designed to curb youth vaping, 54 people have died from lung injuries associated with e-cigarette use in 27 states and the District of Columbia as of Dec. 19, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Go deeperArrowDec 29, 2019

U-Haul will no longer hire nicotine users in 21 states

A U-Haul truck in California. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

U-Haul will not hire people who use nicotine products in 21 states beginning Feb. 1 in an attempt "to establish one of the healthiest corporate cultures in the U.S. and Canada," the company announced Monday in a statement.

Why it matters: The ACLU considers anti-nicotine hiring policies "discriminatory" and a violation of worker privacy, but smokers are not a protected class under federal anti-discrimination laws, which allow states to create their own laws on smoker bans.

Go deeperArrowJan 2, 2020

FDA issues ban on fruit and mint-flavored vape cartridges

People take part in a rally at the steps of City Hall after New York City Council. Photo: Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration issued a ban on Thursday on fruit and mint-flavored vaping cartridges like the pods made by Juul, but with exemptions for tobacco and menthol.

Why it matters: The ban is meant to curb e-cigarette use among children who have been attracted to cartridge vapes due to their flavors, cheap price and concealing features of size and small vape clouds.

Go deeperArrowJan 2, 2020 - Health