Senator urges FDA to ban menthol-flavored cigarettes

“The dangers of menthol tobacco products in general, and to our youth in particular, are highly concerning, and provide abundant grounds for FDA to develop a plan that will result in the removal of menthol from tobacco products to protect public health,” Blumenthal wrote in the letter, addressed to FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg.


Blumenthal is seeking a ban identical to the one imposed in 2009 on cigarettes flavored to taste like chocolate, vanilla, clove and strawberry.


Blumenthal cited a study completed by the federally established Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee (TPSAC) earlier this year that found that menthol flavoring, like other flavoring, makes tobacco usage more attractive to young people.


“It is well-documented that the restriction of access to tobacco products directly impacts youth smoking rates and that FDA should take strong action to prevent tobacco companies from using menthol cigarettes to increase the number of youth who smoke," said Blumenthal.