Coalition calls on Columbus to end sale of flavored tobacco products

Congresswoman Joyce Beatty joined the Coalition to End Tobacco Targeting Thursday to ask the city government to pass legislation that would end the sale of menthol cigarettes and all flavored tobacco products in Columbus.

The coalition advocates for legislation that would ban flavored e-cigarettes and menthol products that have historically targeted the Black community, the coalition said.

“Growing up I can remember not only the Newport (menthol cigarettes) … , but Salem, and Kool,” said Beatty, D-Columbus. “They would do the Kool Jazz Festival that attracted many Black Americans.”

Read more: Former Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman has personal reasons to seek a menthol cigarette ban

Menthol is a common cigarette flavor additive with a minty taste and aroma that reduces the irritation and harshness of smoking, according to the US Food and Drug Administration. This increases appeal, makes menthol cigarettes easier to use, and possibly enhances nicotine’s addictive effects.

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