dictionary

We have all at points been exasperated by how vaping is bundled together with tobacco products and even diseases (EVALI) being associated with vaping when it was caused by illicit THC cartridges.

In an attempt to get the terminology standardised and establish categories of products, a team of researchers from the UK have created an initial version of an Ontology (categorisation) of Tobacco, Nicotine and vaping products. The research was funded by Cancer Research UK.

I first learned of this in an article from Filter Magazine.

You can read the full report here – “Toward an ontology of tobacco, nicotine and vaping products“.

tobacco nicotine classification

This is very important as such things as taxes and legislation put items into categories and in a lot of Governments Vaping and Vaping supplies are categorised as Tobacco.

Of course the EVALI tragedy is another example – the term stands for “E-cigarette or Vaping Product Use Associated Lung Injury”. Which of course scared the crap out of vapers and would be vapers. It turned out it was due to dodgy THC cartridges with Vitamin E Acetate added. But unfortunately the name was not amended and still lurks like a nasty fart online.

So a clear set of categories are needed which cover e-cigarettes, nicotine, tobacco and variants.

Category Drafts

As this is just a proposal this is obviously subject to change but is definitely a huge step in the right direction.

Below are lists of the suggested terms and categories…

Major Classes of tobacco, Nicotine and Vaping Products

Label Definition Parent Class
Tobacco A commodity that is formed from parts of the tobacco plant. Commodity
Tobacco Containing A product that is made of tobacco or has tobacco as a part and is used by people to ingest some tobacco constituents. Product
Nicotine Containing Product A product that includes or contains nicotine for ingestion by the user. Product
Vaping Device A product that produces a vapour for inhalation by a person. Product
Electronic Vaping Device A vaping device that produces vapour by electrically heating a substance that is an e-liquid or a solid. Vaping Device
Combustible Tobacco Containing A tobacco-containing product in which the tobacco is processed to make it suitable for burning for the user to ingest the smoke. Tobacco Containing Product
Heated Tobacco Product A tobacco-containing product that contains a tobacco stick that it heats to cause minimal or no combustion to produce smoke or a vapour for inhalation by a person. Tobacco Containing Product
Smokeless Tobacco Containing Product A tobacco-containing product in which the tobacco is processed for use in a manner that does not involve combustion. Tobacco Containing Product

Types of Tobacco Containing Products

Label Definition Parent Class
Cigar A combustible tobacco-containing product that is a cylinder formed of chopped tobacco encased in tobacco leaf. Combustible tobacco-containing product
Cigarette A combustible tobacco-containing product that is a thin cylinder of finely cut tobacco encased in a thin paper. Combustible tobacco-containing product
Bidi A combustible tobacco-containing product that is a thin small cylinder of dried leaf containing finely chopped tobacco. Combustible tobacco-containing product
Oral Tobacco Containing product A smokeless tobacco-containing product that is manufactured to be held in the mouth. Smokeless Tobacco containing product
Chewing Tobacco Product An oral tobacco-containing product that is manufactured to be chewed. Oral tobacco-containing product
Nasal Snuff A smokeless tobacco-containing product that is formed of dry finely-ground tobacco and is ingested by a person into the nasal cavity. Smokeless nicotine-containing product
Oral Snuff An oral tobacco-containing product that is composed mainly or exclusively of moist, ground or powdered tobacco that is processed to make it suitable for use by a person placing it in the mouth between the gum and the cheek. Oral tobacco-containing product
Cigarillo A cigar that is short and thin with wrapping that is tobacco or tobacco-based paper. Cigar
Manufactured Cigarette A cigarette that is manufactured in a factory. Cigarette
Hand Rolled Cigarette A cigarette whose parts have been purchased separately and assembled by hand or using a device for single assembly. Cigarette

Types of Nicotine Containing Products

Label Definition Parent Class
Oral Nicotine Containing Product A nicotine-containing product that is manufactured to be held in the mouth or chewed so that nicotine is absorbed through the buccal mucosa. Nicotine-containing product
Nasal Nicotine Containing Product A nicotine-containing product that is manufactured to enable users to ingest nicotine through the nasal mucosa. Nicotine-containing product
Inhaled Nicotine Containing Product A nicotine-containing product that is manufactured to enable users to draw a nicotine-containing vapour into the respiratory tract so that nicotine can be absorbed through the lining of this tract. Nicotine-containing product
Transdermal nicotine-containing product A nicotine-containing product that is manufactured to be attached to the skin so that nicotine can be absorbed through the skin. Nicotine-containing product

Types of E-cigarette

Label Definition Parent Class
E-cigarette An electronic vaping device that is hand held and produces for inhalation an aerosol formed by heating an e-liquid using a battery-powered heating coil. Electronic vaping device
Nicotine-containing e-cigarette An e-cigarette whose e-liquid contains nicotine. E-cigarette
E-cigarette open system An e-cigarette in which all of the main components are interchangeable. E-cigarette
E-cigarette pod device An e-cigarette that has as a part a replaceable e-cigarette pod. E-cigarette
E-cigarette closed system An e-cigarette in which none of the main components is interchangeable. E-cigarette

Manufactured Cigarette Attributes

Label Definition Parent Class
Manufactured cigarette machine-smoked nicotine yield A disposition of a manufactured cigarette to produce a quantity of nicotine in the smoke when tested in a smoking machine that is programmed to take puffs in a standard way. Manufactured cigarette disposition
Manufactured cigarette machine-smoked tar yield A disposition of a manufactured cigarette to produce a quantity of tobacco particles in the smoke produced when tested in a smoking machine that is programmed to take puffs in a standard way. Manufactured cigarette disposition
Manufactured cigarette machine-smoked carbon monoxide yield A disposition of a manufactured cigarette to produce a quantity of carbon monoxide in the smoke produced when tested in a smoking machine that is programmed to take puffs in a standard way. Manufactured cigarette disposition

Tobacco Product Parts

Label Definition Parent Class
Cigarette Filter A product that is manufactured to be part of a cigarette, located at the end that the user puts to the lips, which blocks some smoke particles from entering the mouth during use. Product
Heated Tobacco Stick A product that is formed of tobacco processed in such a way as to make it suitable to be used in a heated tobacco-containing product. Product

E-cigarette Product Parts and Characterisation

Label Definition Parent Class
E-cigarette Atomiser A product that is manufactured to be part of an e-cigarette and to heat e-liquid during e-cigarette use to produce a vapour. Product
E-liquid Container A product that is manufactured to be part of an e-cigarette and contain e-liquid. Product
E-cigarette Pod A product that is manufactured to be part of an e-cigarette as a combination of a container for e-liquid, an atomiser and systems for controlling the atomiser connected together into a single component. Product
E-cigarette Battery An electrical battery that is manufactured to be part of an e-cigarette and provide electrical energy for an e-cigarette atomiser. Product
E-liquid A liquid commodity that is used in e-cigarettes for the purpose of aerosolisation and inhalation by a person. Liquid commodity
E-liquid Nicotine Concentration The concentration of nicotine in a portion of e-liquid. Concentration
E-liquid Flavouring A chemical substance that is designed to be part of an e-liquid to impart a flavour to the vapour produced when the e-liquid is used in an e-cigarette Chemical Substance
E-cigarette Battery Power An e-cigarette battery disposition to transfer electrical energy in a circuit containing an atomiser. E-cigarette battery disposition
E-cigarette Atomiser Resistance An e-cigarette atomiser quality that is the opposition of its circuit to the flow of current in that circuit. E-cigarette atomiser quality

Impact On Vaping

As mentioned above being able to classify vape products as being different from tobacco products is of huge benefit.

vaping terminology

Also just standardising the language used in vaping would help prevent confusion and make the subject more accessible to beginners.

Sometimes the sheer complexity of devices and methods can be overwhelming to people who just want to vape to quit smoking. Being able to produce a Glossary of terms which should be pretty standard across the industry would be super helpful.

Conclusions

The conclusions section of this research states the following…

“An ontology is proposed that makes important distinctions between tobacco-containing products, nicotine-containing products and vaping devices. It identifies subclasses of these and properties of these subclasses. We have reported an initial version of the ontology. The aim is that the research and practitioner community can make use of the opportunities provided to comment on and help to extend the ontology and that journals and funders will encourage and support researchers to use the ontology to improve clarity in their writing.”

So far I am really pleased the ball is rolling on standardising the terminology and look forward to updates and (fingers crossed) the terms being used regularly in the vaping industry, Heath, Government and research sectors.

Michelle

My name is Michelle - I am 48 and an engineer and Technical Author by trade. I started vaping many years ago in the days of Tornado tanks, Ego batteries and Variable Voltage. My journey in vaping began again around 2016 and have been interested in the topic ever since. I finally stopped smoking as of June 2019 and that is all thanks to vaping! 20mg Nicotine Salts are my hero! Oh and I am partial to a nice pod mod and Bubblegum e-liquid! I have enjoyed writing for Ecigclick since 2017 and love being part of this great team! My passion for Tobacco Harm Reduction has also led me to becoming a Trustee for the NNA (New Nicotine Alliance) aiding in Advocacy

My name is Michelle - I am 48 and an engineer and Technical Author by trade. I started vaping many years ago in the days of Tornado tanks, Ego batteries and Variable Voltage. My journey in vaping began again around 2016 and have been interested in the topic ever since. I finally stopped smoking as of June 2019 and that is all thanks to vaping! 20mg Nicotine Salts are my hero! Oh and I am partial to a nice pod mod and Bubblegum e-liquid! I have enjoyed writing for Ecigclick since 2017 and love being part of this great team! My passion for Tobacco Harm Reduction has also led me to becoming a Trustee for the NNA (New Nicotine Alliance) aiding in Advocacy

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