FDA to sharply curtail sales of flavored e-cigarettes in convenience stores

The Food and Drug Administration plans to sharply restrict the sale of most flavored pod-style e-cigarettes, effectively pulling them from most convenience stores and gas stations and requiring strict age verification controls for online sales, according to senior FDA officials.

The actions, expected to be announced as early as next week, are aimed at limiting access to the e-cigarettes most popular among children, whose use is surging. Many e-cigarette companies, including market leader Juul Labs Inc., sell nicotine liquids with flavors like mango and cucumber.

Meanwhile, New York is planning to ban the sale of flavored e-cigarettes as early as next year.

The FDA’s new policy will take effect immediately. It will apply to the cartridge-style products like Juul that are popular among young people, not to the open tank-style systems that are used primarily by adults and sold in vape shops, the FDA officials said. No retail outlet will be allowed to carry flavored, pod-style e-cigarettes unless it restricts minors from entering the store or creates an area inside the store that minors can’t enter, one of the senior officials said.

An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.

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