STAT+: Tobacco control groups oppose a bill targeting disposable vapes — because they worry RJ Reynolds is behind it

A new bill would crack down on disposable vapes. But tobacco control groups are opposed, because they worry RJ Reynolds is behind it.

WASHINGTON — There’s a new bill in Congress meant to crack down on the cheap disposable vapes, like Puff Bar, that are increasingly popular with kids. But nearly all of the leading tobacco-control groups don’t want anything to do with it.

They say the bill is being pushed by the makers of competing vapes, namely RJ Reynolds, the maker of Vuse e-cigarettes, to take attention off of its products’ growing popularity, and to push competition out of business. Reynolds denies it helped craft the bill, and advocates can’t prove its involvement. But they point out that the legislation, which would require the Food and Drug Administration to lay out a plan for cracking down on illegal disposable vapes, is very similar to a petition Reynolds submitted to the FDA  just days before the bill was introduced.

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