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Could nearly all E-Cigarettes disappear?

Could nearly all E-Cigarettes disappear? – FDA Regulations to dramatically change the face of vaping forever

E Cigarettes are electronic devices which allow a user to inhale liquid nicotine, generally flavored, which can contribute to helping a user wean themselves off cigarettes. But is this all good news?

Could E-Cigs be spawning a new health damaging habit?

E-Cigs have yet to be fully studied. Therefore customers are not fully aware of:

Potential risks of E-Cigs.

If there are any benefits associated with using vaping products.

How much nicotine or chemicals are being inhaled while using these products.

If E-Cigarettes influence young people to try tobacco products, which they would have not otherwise have tried. We already know the risks of regular cigarettes. Do we want to potentially influence the next generation to get addicted to something which could lead to regular smoking?

Evidence so far suggests that e cigarettes on the whole are a great idea and the health risks are massively reduced in comparison to regular smoking. But how is the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) going to influence the massive up trend of vaping? E-Cigarettes are facing a possible rapid decline due to upcoming FDA regulations. Mainly they will affect how the products are sold, and what hoops the e cig and e liquid vendors have to jump through. The effects could be catastrophic for the industry. Here are some of the guidelines that could come into place:

Only market new products after FDA review

Vendors and manufacturers to register with FDA and report product and ingredient list

Only make direct claims of health benefits over regular smoking if the FDA confirms the scientific evidence that it will be beneficial to public health overall

No distribution of free samples

Minimum age requirements to stop sale of products to minors

Requirement to show health warnings

No vending machine sales (apart from maybe casinos etc)

Complete overhaul of the way the eliquid is sold – maximum nicotine per ml and maximum sizes making some current products completely obsolete

This might not seem so damaging, but lets take for example the many small vaping shops which have popped up everywhere. In the UK and America, over the last 5 years there has been thousands of small businesses investing into this and opening shops, will they cope with the new regulations?

Effect on small Vaping businesses

Lets take your local vaping shop as an example. Due to new regulation, they will need to get packaging for all their products, and get each tested. They currently generally have a generic packaging for their eliquid, and don’t have to get it tested.

Currently they sell 6mg, 12mg, 18mg & 24mg nicotine strength eliquid. They sell this in a normal PG/VG (propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin) and they generally sell one with a higher VG ratio, this is due to the users preference. They also have 180 flavors.

180 flavours x 4 strengths x 2 types = 1440 different packaging requirements. Can you imagine your local e cig vendor being able to produce that many different types of packaging, and store them? They could possibly get away with having only one box for eliquid per flavor and list the difference in nicotine, but even then the ingredient list may not be accurate enough for the FDA.

Further to this, they will now need to retrospectively apply for each product to be approved. The cost for this is said to run into the millions. We are not sure about the implied cost associated with this, but the New York Times have estimated a pre-market review demonstrating each specific product to be beneficial to smokers and how it would affect non-smokers to cost around $300,000.

There are also many other minor problems vendors will have to deal with. Such as the fact the Eliquid can only be sold in 10ml bottles. So the current 30ml bottles sold, will now be obsolete. On the tech side of things, the batteries and products are going to be regulated to only a few devices, possibly spawning more mass producing of smaller “cigalike” devices – generally the only ones you see on TV advertising at the moment, such as the Vype advertisements. Advertising is likely to take a huge hit as well. There will be no advertising until they can convince the FDA otherwise.

The final word

It seems to us, the astronomical costs of getting Ecigs and Eliquid to market, will not be something which is achievable for a small e cig vendor. That would mean closure of up to 99% of e cigarette businesses. However is this an opportunity for larger companies to absolutely dominate the market? Example being BAT (British American Tobacco). They own Vype, and according to wikipedia, BAT have an annual Revenue of $42 billion, compared to your average ecigarette shop having an annual revenue of around $108,000. Seems to us its a perfect opening for a company with an unlimited budget, it would also be fair to say BAT were all for FDA regulations before they released their own brand of Ecigs. Now they have done a total 180 and consider the FDA to be hindering them, they are calling for the FDA to revisit the proposed guidelines. Despite all this, it would seem it is not deterring some vendors from coming up with new products, VG E Liquid from the UK by Pure E Liquids for example. However it seems this particular brand is ahead of the game in some respects. They already get their eliquid batch tested, so that will make the changeover easier and do not sell anything larger than 10ml. They seem to be preparing for the guidelines as best they can – but will it be enough? With 135,000 comments being reviewed by the FDA though, it doesn’t look like we are facing a British American Tobacco domination, or a catastrophic decline in our local ecig vendors, just yet.

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