The FDA moving to ban menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars with a proposal Today.
But some wonder how this will affect businesses who sell these.
Douglas Braff spoke the owner of a Bellefonte convenience store and he live with more
That’s right but that’s not the only question here. Is there a balance between personal choice and public health?
“Every day by day, I sell the stuff. So, I know that what the people choose and people like that.”
The FDA says banning menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars could save hundreds of thousands of lives over the next four decades.
The agency says menthols make up over a third of us cigarette sales adding that black and young smokers tend to buy them more.
“I have, like, 80% of my customer who belong to the cigarette. They used to the menthol stuff and flavor stuff. If 80% gone, so, what left in my pocket? Nothing.”
The owner of the Bellefonte Mart tells me he fears this could hurt small businesses, like his.
“If that happens So, every small business owner have to survive, they can able to make, like, good business. And that’s a hard time for them and them family to surviving.”
However, he understands that many suffer through addiction.
“So, what’s going to impact also them on a mentally or physically, because they are under the addiction. So, It’s going to [be a] hard time for them, too.”
But he says he thinks adults should ultimately decide what to put into their bodies.
“On that side, like, we are in United State and we are living [in a democracy]. So, everyone have to make your own decision. And once they become adults, the choice depend on them.”
The FDA will hear from the public before any ban moves ahead.
But tobacco companies could potentially slow that down for years with lawsuits.
Officials from Penn Highlands, Conemaugh Health, and Mount Nittany Health were not available for comment.