Judge Richard J. Leon of Federal District Court in Washington, D.C. ordered the Food Drug Administration (FDA) to stop their electronic cigarette ban. According to the New York Times, the electronic cigarette ban by the FDA was an aggressive effort switch tobacco regulation into a drug or medical device regulation.
Electronic cigarettes (also known as e-cigarettes) are tubes that are powered by batteries in order to heat lquid nicotine into a vapor that is inhaled by the user. The two companies involved in this lawsuit are Smoking Everywhere Inc. and NJoy; which are two Chinese manufacturers.
The judge wrote: "This case appears to be yet another example of F.D.A.'s aggressive efforts to regulate recreational tobacco products as drugs or devices." The FDA will be able to regulate the e-cigarettes under its new tobacco division, but it will not be able to ban the product altogether.
The New York Times quoted a statement released by the FDA as saying: "The public health issues surrounding electronic cigarettes are of serious concern to the F.D.A. The agency is reviewing Judge Leon's opinion and will decide the appropriate action to take."
The FDA released a press release back in July 2009 that stated the harm of the product. Their laboratory analysis of electronic cigarette samples found carcinogens such as nitrosamines and diethylene glycol, an ingredient used in antifreeze.
The Wall Street Journal reports that e-cigarettes are currently under fire by the attorneys general of California and New Jersey.