Sacramento County bans flavored tobacco products, including e-cigarettes and menthol

Updated on January 11, 2022

After hours of debate and public discussion Tuesday night, the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors voted to ban sales of flavored tobacco, including menthol.

Here’s what’s banned from July 2022: candy-flavored e-cigarettes, hookah tobacco, menthol cigarettes, and sugary cigars often used to smoke cannabis.

The new law only affects sales in unincorporated areas of the county. The city of Sacramento enacted a similar ban two years ago, and Elk Grove did the same last year. Other cities in the county should create their own laws against flavored tobacco.

Under the new law, businesses in the county have six months to offload their current supply of products or face fines of up to $25,000 in the future.

The county’s decision comes months before Californians vote on a statewide initiative, which could uphold a previous ban signed by Governor Gavin Newsom in 2020.

—Kris Hooks

Original story, published September 14, 2021

Sacramento County supervisors could discuss a ban on flavored tobacco products, including e-cigarette juice and menthol cigarettes, by the end of this year.

Supervisor Patrick Kennedy joined health advocates and doctors on Thursday to present the proposal.

“Ending the sale of all candy flavored tobacco products, including mint menthol, will save lives,” he said. “And that’s why we’ll do everything we can to push the order I’m proposing to county supervisors with a sense of urgency.”

A flavored tobacco ban took effect in the city of Sacramento in 2020. It requires retailers to “stop ordering and restocking flavored tobacco products” or risk having their tobacco retail license suspended or revoked. The ban applies to cigars, cigarillos, vaping liquids and hookah tobacco.

City Councilman Eric Guerra says it’s been difficult to enforce the rule while flavored tobacco sales are still allowed in the unincorporated county.

“All the great work the City of Sacramento is trying to do to prevent the influence of tobacco on young children is minimized or diminished by someone moving their retail license and crossing the street,” he said. -he declares.

The city could not provide the number of business licenses that were affected by the ban.

Health advocates and pediatricians say the flavored vape juice is designed to get teens addicted to nicotine. An analysis of state data from UC San Diego found that in Sacramento County, 90% of children who smoke use a flavored product.

“Nicotine use in children and adolescents alters their brain function and can interfere with attention and learning,” said Dr. Lesley Desmond, a pediatrician at UC Davis Health. “And [it] prepares them for an increased risk of cancer later on.

Manufacturers of e-cigarette devices and liquids have to be under the fire of justice in recent years for marketing to children, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has tried to crack down on the trend.

California passed a flavored tobacco ban in 2020, but it never took effect because the tobacco companies filed a referendum, which will be on the ballot in 2022.

Dr. Lynn Silver, Senior Advisor to a Health Advocacy Organization Public Health Institute, says local courts had to take the matter into their own hands. More than 100 cities and counties in California have enacted flavored tobacco bans, according to the Tobacco-free children countryside.

“The strategy that has worked for tobacco control is a combination of raising public awareness about the importance and death of tobacco, and supporting and funding community health and other organizations…from small towns to states and government federal…to advance those policies,” she said.

Advocates also point out targeted marketing menthol cigarettes to African Americans as a reason to ban all flavored tobacco products.

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