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Court Ordered Decision on Menthol Cigarettes Expected Next Week

On April 29, 2021, the Food and Drug Administration is expected to make a major policy announcement on menthol cigarettes. The FDA is under a court ordered deadline to respond to a citizen petition, filed in 2013 by the African American Tobacco Control Leadership Council, that requested FDA action to remove menthol cigarettes from the market.


When Congress first passed the Tobacco Control Act in 2009, it immediately banned flavored cigarettes from the U.S. market, but exempted menthol cigarettes and instead differed the issue of menthol flavored cigarettes to the FDA. The FDA has since commissioned two separate reports that documented the adverse health effects that menthol flavors have on tobacco initiation, addiction, adverse health effects and impact on cessation rates that underline the need to remove menthol products from the market.


The ATS will closely watch the FDA’s announcement next week and will continue to push for immediate removal of menthol-flavored cigarettes from the U.S. market.

Last Reviewed: May 2021