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FDA bans sale of four R.J. Reynolds products

Posted September 15, 2015

The R.J. Reynolds Tobacco building has stood at 401 North Main St. in Winston-Salem for more than 80 years.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday banned the sale of four brands of R.J. Reynolds cigarettes, saying their recipes were not similar enough to existing, tested products to demonstrate an equivalent health risk.

Under federal law set out in 2009, tobacco companies could release new products so long as they were similar (the law says "substantially equivalent") to existing products. The companies had until March 2011 to prove that similarity, and the FDA determined that Reynolds' Camel Crush Bold, Pall Mall Deep Set Recessed Filter, Pall Mall Deep Set Recessed Filter Menthol and Vantage Tech 13 cigarettes did not meet that standard.

“The agency will continue to review product submissions and exercise its legal authority and consumer protection duty to remove products from the market when they fail to meet the public health bar set forth under law,” said Mitch Zeller, director of the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products.

FDA scientists found the four products had higher levels of menthol, and/or new or different ingredients than existing products.

Effective immediately, Camel Crush Bold, Pall Mall Deep Set Recessed Filter, Pall Mall Deep Set Recessed Filter Menthol and Vantage Tech 13 cigarettes can't be sold in the United States. Stores have 30 days to get rid of existing products, the FDA encourages them to return the banned products to the manufacturer or otherwise dispose of them.

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