Press Releases



Smokeless tobacco proposal comment deadline near


Quarles opposes rule as 'devastating' to Kentucky dark tobacco industry


For Immediate Release
Tuesday, June 20, 2017
For more information contact:
Ted Sloan
(502) 782-0285


FRANKFORT, Ky. — Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles reminds Kentucky dark tobacco growers and other stakeholders that the deadline for submitting comments on a proposed federal regulation on smokeless tobacco products is July 10.

“This proposed rule would have a devastating economic impact on dark tobacco growers and businesses in Kentucky,” Commissioner Quarles said. “If enacted, it would have the effect of banning the sale of smokeless tobacco in the United States. I urge anyone who has an interest to send your comments to Washington and let your voice be heard.”

In a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price sent earlier this year, Commissioner Quarles asked the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to withdraw the proposal. Commissioner Quarles said that the FDA did not accurately estimate the economic impact of the proposed rule and did not propose a standard that was “technically achievable” as required by the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act. The proposal would limit the N-Nitrosonornicotine level in finished smokeless tobacco products to one part per million.

Commissioner Quarles suggested that stakeholders be brought together to create a new standard that is realistic and achievable and would not create a devastating economic impact.

Kentucky led the nation in production of dark fire-cured and dark air-cured tobacco in 2015 at 31.7 million pounds and 13.75 million pounds, respectively.

To read the rule and add your comment, go to