device following a rigorous science-based review through the pre-market tobacco product application (PMTA) pathway. The FDA determined that authorizing these products for the US market is appropriate for the protection of the public health because, among several key considerations, the products produce fewer or lower levels of some toxins than combustible cigarettes.
“While today’s action permits the tobacco products to be sold in the US, it does not mean these products are safe or ‘FDA approved’,” stated the agency.
iQOS, which if you've heard over the years is because it has had numerous failures to launch, is a device that works by heating tobacco leaves known as Heets or HeatSticks. These refills which look like cigarettes without the filter, must be inserted into the device and are heated up once iQOS is switched on. They are of course sold by Philip Morris under their Marlboro brand for approximately the same price as their combustible counterparts, making the move for switching from combustible smokes to this device purely health driven.
Which if you stop to consider is a weird motive because these heat not burn devices are safer than smoking, but still less safe than vaping eLiquids. A recent study by anti-smoking expert Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos, analyzed and compared carbonyl emissions from an heat not burn device, an e-cigarette and a regular cigarette. The study concluded that the IQOS device emits substantially lower levels of carbonyls than a regular cigarette but higher levels than an e-cigarette.
During a press release in December 2016, Philip Morris International had announced that it had submitted a MRTP application with the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products for the product. On the 24th of January 2018, the FDA’s Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee had met to discuss this MRTP application for the IQOS system with Marlboro Heatsticks, the IQOS system with Marlboro Smooth Menthol Heatsticks, and the IQOS system with Marlboro Fresh Menthol Heatsticks. Last week they got the FDA's approval.
What's concerning here is not the approval for an already outdated technology, as clearly vaping wins outright in terms of concerns over health and the environment, but that Alex Clark, CEO of the Consumer Advocates for Smoke-Free Alternatives Association; CASAA, a nonprofit which champions tobacco harm reduction efforts, is one of many who spoke in favor of the FDA’s decision. “CASAA supports the FDA’s decision to approve IQOS for market in the United States. It is vital that people who smoke are aware of and have access to non-combustible alternatives to cigarettes and that these products are enjoyable.” Alex stated.
Why is the organization that has been all in on the battle against big tobacco and on the side of the little guy in the vape world all of the sudden stoked about Philip Morris's new tobacco product? What will this mean now with rival Altria has put it's stake into JUUL thus joining the vape side? Will anyone even buy this thing? What do you think about all of this?