A bill that would have banned the sale of most flavored nicotine products in Colorado failed to get out of a Senate committee Tuesday, effectively killing it for this session.
House Bill 1064 would have banned all flavored tobacco products and nicotine liquids, except “premium cigars” and hookah tobacco.
Some flavored tobacco products may still be leaving the shelves soon, though. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has proposed banning menthol from cigarettes and all flavors from cigars. Flavored combustible cigarettes were banned in 2009.
Technically, most vaping liquids aren’t supposed to be on the market while the FDA evaluates them, but no one is enforcing that.
Amanda Wheeler, president of the American Vapor Manufacturers, released a statement praising the Senate appropriations committee’s vote not to advance the bill.
“Colorado rejecting the flavor ban is a signal for other jurisdictions to refocus public health efforts on what works — vaping,” she said. “Nicotine vaping is the single most effective smoking cessation method ever devised.”
The public health community agrees that vaping is less dangerous than smoking, but is divided on whether flavored nicotine is a net benefit to society, since young people are more likely to try nicotine if it has an appealing taste.
A coalition called Flavors Hook Kids vowed to try again next year.
“The failure of the legislature to protect our kids won’t dissuade us from working at every level to get these products out of stores and out of our children’s hands,” Jodi Radke, regional director for the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, said in a news release. “The continued addiction of our children, and the lifelong health issues they will be shackled with, are not something we can or should look away from.”