On Friday, July 28, 2017, the FDA announced that it intends to pursue regulations to significantly lower nicotine levels in cigarettes to reduce their addictive properties. These policy measures would likely lower the burden of tobacco-related disease and death, and prevent millions of teens and young adults from becomming addicted. The FDA will be issuing specific guideance shortly describing new enforcement policies concerning nicotine levels in tobacco products, as well as with e cigarette and other electronic nicotine delivery system (ENDS) products. The agency also announced that it will extend the timeline for applications for newly-regulated products such as cigars, pipe tobacco, and hookah tobacco to August 8, 2021, and for non-combustible products such as e-cigarettes to August 8, 2022.
Experts in the field concerning nicotine levels suggest a great reduction in cigarettes is needed. According to Eric Donney, Ph.D., a University of Pittsburgh researcher, cigarettes should have reduced nicotine levels by at least 90% for smokers to become less dependent. He says that if nicotine levels are lowered just a little, people may smoke more to make up the difference. (Associated Press, (07.28.2017).