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Posts Tagged ‘CTP’

FDA Continues to Issue Warning Letters for Illegal Tobacco Sales to Minors

March 29, 2011 17 comments

Every day nearly 4,000 kids under 18 try their first cigarette and 1,000 kids under 18 become daily smokers. Virtually all new users of tobacco products are under the minimum legal age to purchase such products. Many of these kids will become addicted before they are old enough to understand the risks and will ultimately die too young of tobacco-related diseases.

FDA is working to protect the health of America’s children and ultimately reduce the burden of illness and death caused by tobacco use by enforcing the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (Tobacco Control Act) and Regulations Restricting the Sale and Distribution of Cigarettes and Smokeless Tobacco to Protect Children and Adolescents. This regulation, which took effect on June 22, 2010, limits the sale, distribution, and marketing of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco to protect the health of children and adolescents.

FDA works to inform retailers about these laws through the Break the Chain of Tobacco Addition campaign. FDA will also host a series of Compliance Training for Tobacco Retailers, to be held on March 29, April 26, May 18, June 28, July 26, and September 20, 2011, to provide retailers with training on federal tobacco regulations.

Last year, in order to help enforce these laws, FDA awarded contracts to 15 states to assist in inspecting retail establishments that sell cigarettes and/or smokeless tobacco products. In the upcoming years, FDA plans to award enforcement contracts to all states and U.S. territories to assist with enforcement of the Tobacco Control Act.

The goal of the State Enforcement Program is to improve public health and to protect young people by bringing enforcement action against retailers who violate the law. State inspectors under these FDA enforcement contracts conduct compliance check inspections to determine if retailers comply with the law, including whether the retailer:

  • sells a tobacco product to a minor;
  • requests proper identification;
  • sells prohibited flavored cigarettes or individual cigarettes; and
  • sells tobacco products in a self-service display, like a vending machine, which can be accessed by minors.

We appreciate the efforts and commitment of all states who have contracted with FDA to assist in enforcing the Tobacco Control Act and FDA regulation. More than 95 Warning Letters have been issued to retailers for illegal sales of cigarettes and/or smokeless tobacco to minors. FDA’s website posts Warning Letters that have been issued as well as a list of retailers that have been inspected and where no violations were observed.

We encourage anyone who is aware of retailers who may violate the Tobacco Control Act to report violations to FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products through our website, by email or by phone (1-877-CTP-1373).

Thank you,
Ann Simoneau
Director, Office of Compliance and Enforcement

New Spanish-Language Website Increases Access to FDA Tobacco Information

March 10, 2011 47 comments

I am pleased to announce that many portions of FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products (CTP) website are now available in Spanish. This new resource for the Spanish-speaking community will provide key information to our stakeholders in our common goal of reducing the tremendous toll of illness and death from tobacco use through FDA’s new role in tobacco product regulation. By increasing access to our content to the Spanish-speaking public we not only increase the reach of our message, but also make further in-roads into communities that play a key role in tackling this important public health issue.

Over the last several months, I’ve heard from many stakeholders in a number of ways about the overall need for CTP to provide key tobacco product information in different languages. This was echoed by a request from a woman named Sarah who submitted a request for low-literacy handouts in multiple languages to our CTP Tobacco Ideas Forum (which is a novel way for the public to submit a thought and then have it voted on by other stakeholders). Input like this from the general public, combined with what we’ve learned through many other communication channels, has led to the launch of this Spanish-version website. The first of several plain language handouts similar to what Sarah, and many others have requested, as well as a variety of free resources and tools are now available. These include:

  • The Break the Chain of Tobacco Addiction retailer education campaign web area, which includes translated printed materials that can be ordered online;
  • An digital timeline of the Tobacco Control Act, which highlights past achievements and upcoming deadlines required by the Act;
  • Multiple ways to connect with the us through social media;
  • Federal resources on youth tobacco prevention, effective treatment for nicotine addiction, and tobacco research and statistics;
  • And much more!

I encourage you to check out www.fda.gov/tabaco and let us know what you think. I also hope you will contribute to the CTP Tobacco Ideas Forum. We are listening and want your ideas to improve our efforts to effectively disseminate information about FDA tobacco regulations and to develop innovative ways to educate the public about the dangers of tobacco products use.

Thank you

–Lawrence R. Deyton, M.S.P.H., M.D., Director, FDA Center for Tobacco Products

Materials Available from FDA Basics Webinar on the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products State Enforcement Program

January 19, 2011 10 comments

Did you miss the FDA Basics webinar about FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products State Enforcement Program?  FDA is contracting with states and U.S. Territories to help with compliance and enforcement activities in order to limit the availablity of tobacco products to young people.

Materials from the webinar are now available on the FDA Basics website.

Check out the “What’s New” tab on the FDA Basics homepage to download materials from the webinar.  We have posted a link to view and listen to the 30 minute webinar and posted a link to download a copy of the presentation slides.

You can find materials from past FDA Basics webinars here.

Afia Asamoah, Transparency Initiative Coordinator

Upcoming Event: FDA Basics Webinar by the Center for Tobacco Products on the State Enforcement Program, Tuesday, January 11, 2011 at 1 pm ET

January 5, 2011 10 comments

Did you know that the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act gives FDA the authority to contract with states and U.S. Territories to help with compliance and enforcement activities to help limit the availability of tobacco products to young people?

As part of FDA Basics, FDA is hosting a webinar where you can learn more.  The featured speaker, Ann Simoneau, Director of the Center for Tobacco Products Office of Compliance and Enforcement, will discuss the state enforcement program for tobacco.  After the presentation, there will be an opportunity to ask questions.

The free 30 minute webinar will be held Tuesday, January 11 at 1:00 pm ET.

There are a limited number of spots available for the webinar.  Materials from the webinar will also be made available on the FDA Web site following the presentation.

Click here for more information about the webinar, including instructions about how to join the webainr.

Afia Asamoah, Transparency Initiative Coordinator

Help Reduce the Health Burden of Tobacco Use in America—Comment on the New Proposed Graphic Health Warning Labels for Cigarette Packs and Advertisements

November 10, 2010 31 comments

Cigarette smoking kills an estimated 443,000 Americans each year, most of whom began smoking when they were under the age of 18. Tobacco use is the foremost preventable cause of premature death in America, and has been shown to cause cancer, heart disease, and other serious adverse health effects. Nearly 50,000 deaths annually are attributed to non-smokers’ exposure to secondhand smoke. That’s why today, we took another important step to protect the health of the American public from the toll of disease, disability and death caused by tobacco use in this county.

Earlier this morning, I joined Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, Assistant Secretary for Health Dr. Howard Koh and FDA Commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg to announce a proposal to require new and prominent health warnings on all cigarette packages, cartons and advertisements.

While most Americans know in general terms that tobacco is harmful, few know the key facts of how damaging tobacco is to their own health and the health of those around them. The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, a bill passed by an overwhelming majority of Congress, gave FDA the authority to require new, larger, and more prominent health warnings on packages and in advertising.

For cigarettes packs, cartons and ads, there will be nine warning statements and, for the first time, the FDA will require these warning labels to include color graphics clearly depicting the negative health consequences of smoking. 

The Tobacco Control Act also requires the warning statements to appear on the upper 50 percent of the front and rear panels of every cigarette package. Graphic health warnings will also occupy at least 20 percent of the upper portion of every cigarette advertisement. The inclusion of larger and more noticeable graphic health warnings on packages and in advertisements will clearly and effectively convey the negative health consequences of smoking to educate all Americans about the health risks of cigarettes. The goal of course is to help encourage current smokers to quit, and discourage nonsmokers, including youth, from starting to use cigarettes.

Everyone has the opportunity to comment directly on these proposed warnings and to help FDA choose the graphic health warnings required by law for use on cigarette packages and advertisements from Friday, November 12, 2010 through Tuesday, January 11, 2011. I encourage you to view the proposed warnings at www.fda.gov/cigarettewarnings and submit a comment so your suggestions can be officially considered for the final decision on how to do this, which will be issued by June 22, 2011.

Thank you
–Dr. Lawrence R. Deyton, M.S.P.H, M.D, Director FDA Center for Tobacco Products

New FDA Basics Video Available about FDA’s Regulation of Tobacco Products

July 20, 2010 18 comments

As part of FDA Basics, FDA has posted a new video with Dr. Lawrence Deyton, director of FDA's Center for Tobacco Products.  Dr. Deyton discusses FDA's new authority to regulate tobacco products.  View the video below.

Materials Available from FDA Basics Webinar on “FDA’s Regulation of Tobacco Products — The Year in Review and Looking Forward”

July 6, 2010 4 comments

Did you miss the FDA Basics webinar on “FDA’s Regulation of Tobacco Products”?

Check out the “What’s New” box on the FDA Basics home page to download materials from the webinar.  We have posted a link to listen to the entire 30 minute webinar as well posted a link to download a copy of the presentation slides.

You can find materials from past FDA Basics webinars here.

Afia Asamoah

Transparency Initiative Coordinator

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