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FDA Denies Talk of Online E-Cigarette Sales Ban

SILVER SPRING, Md. -- Despite media reports that the online sale of electronic cigarettes could soon be banned, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a statement saying that it did not discuss any possible regulations in a series of listening sessions held last week.

"The FDA did not raise or weigh in on potential regulatory options -- including any potential restrictions on e-cigarettes or any other particular product category -- during these listening sessions," said Mitch Zeller, director of the FDA's Center for Tobacco Products. "Any details about the agency's intent to regulate additional categories of tobacco products will be made publicly available to all interested parties at the same time, through the issuance of a proposed rule."

According to the statement from the agency, the FDA frequently meets with members of the tobacco industry, as well as with public health groups and other stakeholders, to better understand any concerns or questions they may have. As part of this effort, listening sessions with e-cigarette companies have been held at their request and have given the FDA an opportunity to listen to their concerns and views.

The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009 gave the FDA the authority to regulate tobacco products. In April 2011, the agency said it was developing a strategy to regulate electronic cigarettes as tobacco products under the 2009 measure.

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