On Tuesday, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously decided to uphold their ban on the sale of flavored tobacco, which means that it will be the voters that will get the final say next summer.
After the ban was passed earlier this summer, a group called Let’s Be Real San Francisco organized a petition seeking its repeal, gathering more than the nearly 20,000 valid signatures to qualify for the ballot. As part of the repeal process, the proposal must first go to the Board of Supervisors to give them the opportunity to repeal the issue. With that not happening on Tuesday, voters will get their opportunity to repeal it either as part of a special election or at the next scheduled election, which is June 5, 2018.
The ban has yet to go into effect, as during the legislative process the effective date was amended to April 1, 2018 in order to give retailers time to sell off existing stock and prepare for the change.
The ban defines a flavored tobacco product as one where the manufacturer or any of the manufacturer’s agents or employees make a statement or claim to consumers or the public that the product has a characterizing flavor via the product’s packaging. The ban would apply to both cigarettes and other tobacco products.