According to reports, Joe Biden and his administration are now expected to propose a ban on menthol and flavored cigarettes and cigars. If the ban is successful, we could see the sale of many tobacco products including
Swisher Sweets and Backwoods.
For years now, civil rights activists have actively pushed for the ban noting that Black Americans have been gravely affected by the tobacco industry’s aggressive marketing tactics. A study by the American Lung Association notes that 77.4% of Black Americans smoke menthol cigarettes.
“When you combine high rates of smoking with systematic racism in health care systems, you have a tremendous health disparity,” said Erika Sward, the National Assistant Vice President for advocacy at the American Lung Association. While Delmonte Jefferson, Executive Director of the Center for Black Health & Equity, said, “COVID-19 and the racial awakening we had last summer exposed the inequities in our system. Menthol is just another example of the health inequities that have plagued African Americans for generations.”
If the ban is success federal officials at the U.S. Drug and Food Administration will move into a rule-making process that could take years, but the ban would eventually go into effect.