Menthol Toolkit

Image of man smoking

The Menthol Toolkit is a collection of resources created by the Tobacco Control Legal Consortium at the Public Health Law Center for state and local advocates to educate themselves on menthol tobacco products, and find out how they can effect change in the sale and consumption of menthol tobacco products in their communities.

In 2009, Congress passed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, banning all flavorings from cigarettes except menthol, but granting the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the authority to extend that ban to include menthol. To this date, the FDA has not acted on menthol.

Menthol flavored cigarettes are more appealing to new and younger smokers. Menthol tobacco products are also consumed at very high rates among African Americans and other minority groups.

How Other Countries Regulate Flavored Tobacco Products (2015)

Summary of select flavored tobacco restrictions from around the world.

Minty Taste of Death: State and Local Options to Regulate Menthol in Tobacco Products (2015)

Journal article by Michael Freiberg describing several local and state policy measures to regulate menthol in tobacco products. 64 Cath. U. L. Rev. 949 (2015); ClearWay Minnesota-funded research.

The Problem with Menthol: A Backgrounder (2015)

Key points on the public health risk of menthol in tobacco products and policy options that state and local governments could consider to regulate menthol tobacco products.

Chicago's Regulation of Menthol Flavored Tobacco Products: A Case Study (2016)

The story of Chicago's 2013 adoption of an ordinance restricting the sale of all flavored tobacco products, including menthol, within 500 feet of any city school.

Regulating Menthol Flavored Tobacco Products: Lessons Learned (2015)

Lessons from U.S. state and local governments that have regulated or attempted to regulate menthol flavored tobacco products.

Select Bibliography on Menthol Tobacco Products & Related Regulatory Resources (2015)

A select compilation of recent scientific studies, advocacy resources, and similar material related to the regulation of menthol tobacco products.

Regulating Menthol Tobacco Products - Tips & Tools (2015)

A guide to policy considerations in regulating menthol tobacco products at state and local levels.

Model Resolution Requesting that FDA Prohibit Menthol as a Characterizing Flavor in Cigarettes (2015)

Sample resolution calling on the U.S. Food & Drug Administration to add menthol to the list of characterizing flavors prohibited in cigarettes.

Webinar: Making a Move on Menthol: Regulating Flavored Tobacco Products in Your Community (2014)

Thu, 11/13/2014

This webinar addresses the problem of menthol tobacco products at the state and local level, summarizes the legal landscape regarding the regulation of these products, and provides lessons learned from two jurisdictions that have recently addressed this problem:  Hawaii, where an ultimately unsuccessful legislative bill would have prohibited the sale of all flavored tobacco products in the state; and Chicago, where the city council passed an ordinance in 2013, restricting the sale of flavored tobacco products within 500 feet of all city schools. 

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Cool, Minty & Toxic: What to Do About the Problem of Menthol in Tobacco Products (2014)

Information and infographics on the adverse health impacts of menthol flavoring in tobacco products, and local and state options for regulating menthol tobacco products. 

Sample Language to Restrict the Sale of Flavored Tobacco Products, Including Menthol (2014)

Sample language that a local government can adapt to restrict the sale of flavored non-cigarette tobacco products.

Regulating Flavored Tobacco Products - Tips & Tools (2014)

Considerations for communities and policymakers in drafting and implementing policies that regulate flavored tobacco products.