FDA Authorizes Reduced Nicotine Cigarettes for Sale and Market in the US

Cigarettes, FDA, Product Availability

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently announced that two new, reduced nicotine cigarette products – Moonlight and Moonlight Menthol, manufactured by 22nd Century Group Inc. – can be marketed and sold in stores in the US. Through a review of their premarket tobacco product application, the FDA determined that these low nicotine cigarettes (0.2-0.7 mg of nicotine per cigarette, compared to an average 10-14 mg per cigarette in standard combustible cigarettes) are “appropriate for the protection of the public health” due to the potential for these products to reduce adult smokers’ nicotine dependence. As well, the FDA determined that these new products are unlikely to attract non-smokers and youth, and that those who do choose to experiment with these products are less likely to become addicted than if they had experimented with conventional cigarettes. While Moonlight and Moonlight Menthol have far less nicotine content than traditional cigarettes, the new products are otherwise identical to cigarettes in composition with numerous toxic ingredients known to cause adverse health consequences. While these two products are now legal to market and sell and offer a lower nicotine content option, they, like any tobacco product, are not considered “FDA-approved” or deemed “safe” by the FDA. The FDA will continue to monitor these two new products to confirm they are effectively protecting the health of the public.

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