The Ban Means Vaping Across America Is Under Serious Threat
Ban Francisco has banned flavoured e-liquids and vapers in Chicago and New York are now anxiously waiting to see if their cities are the next dominoes to fall in this attack on the rights of US vapers.
San Francisco had brought in the ban this time last year however campaigners were able to gather enough votes to force a re-think.
Sadly and despite a huge cash injection from Big Tobacco to fight the banning order a vote yesterday resulted in 68% of residents in favour of the ban with just 31% against.
This could mean dire consequences for the city’s thriving vape shops and may result in many being forced to close and the devastation to jobs and families that will bring.
President of the American Vaping Association – Greg Conley said:
It is a travesty that anti-vaping extremists would mislead SF voters into making it harder for adult smokers to quit.
However supporters of the ban were quick to applaud the vote with the American Lung Association saying:
San Francisco’s youth are routinely bombarded with advertising for flavored tobacco and e-cigarettes every time they walk into a neighborhood convenience store.
It’s clear that these products with candy themes and colorful packaging are geared towards teens.
Erm no they’re not…and as we keep on saying adults like flavours too!
UK Vaping Advocacy Group Slams the Flavour Ban
The New Nicotine Alliance has slammed the ban and says it hopes a ‘black market will flourish’ under the new legislation and warns the FDA may be eying the ‘idea’ whilst the anti vaping World Health Organization are dribbling with delight.
NNA Chair Sarah Jakes as usual didn’t hold back:
Flavours are a vitally important part of the attraction of vaping to adult smokers and the San Francisco ban has been enacted with zero evidence to show that it will have any effect at all on young people’s use of e-cigarettes, which is mainly experimental use among young people who already smoke anyway.
The likely effect of this ban will be to put San Francisco vape shops out of business and since they are key to helping people switch from smoking, the result will be less people stopping smoking.
Another possible unintended consequence is that people will be tempted to use food flavourings to flavour e-liquids and many of those are not suitable for inhalation because they contain oils.
Whilst experienced vapers will understand the danger many others will not be so well informed so we could see the first real, as opposed to imaginary cases of lipoid pneumonia from vaping, caused entirely by the actions of the regulators.
Let’s hope for vapers’ sake a vibrant black market in safe flavourings flourishes.
It is almost a certainty that other cities in the US will try to follow the path that San Francisco has taken, and it wouldn’t be at all surprising if the FDA were eyeing it up as a good idea.
Whilst it’s unlikely that the UK would consider banning flavours you certainly couldn’t say the same for the EU, and no doubt the World Health Organisation are already salivating at the prospect.
It is vitally important that independent unbiased researchers now monitor what happens in San Francisco, because I think we all know what will happen if this is left to the local University.
Vape Advocacy Groups and Big Tobacco Joined Forces
I’ve said it before that vaping advocacy can make for strange bedfellows and in this case and given flavoured tobacco including menthol was under threat – R.J. Reynolds makers of Camel among others – had pumped over $11million dollars in the campaign to stop the ban known as Proposition E.
However they faced stiff opposition from the usual anti vaping suspects such as the Campaign For Tobacco Free Kids who were crowing about the result:
San Francisco’s groundbreaking law stands – and will stop the tobacco industry from targeting kids, African Americans and other populations with menthol- and candy-flavored products, as the industry has done for far too long.
The San Francisco vote gives a powerful boost to growing efforts around the country to end the sale of flavored tobacco products.
R.J. Reynolds spent more than $11.6 million on a self-serving and deceptive campaign to try to overturn the law because they want to sustain the pipeline of kids the tobacco industry needs to survive. Reynolds knows that menthol and other flavors – including candy flavors – play a key role in attracting kids to start and continue using tobacco products.
Today’s vote shows that voters can and will see through industry lies and stand up for kids.
Incidentally the reason they’ve highlighted ‘African Americans’ is because apparently statistics show they are most likely to smoke menthol flavoured lit tobacco.
The group also praised former New York billionaire mayor Michael Bloomberg – a born again passionate anti tobacco/vaping campaigner for his new anti tobacco charity’s support.
Bloomberg recently launched the Stopping Tobacco Organizations and Products [STOP] organization with an initial $20million cash injection.
As to whether the anti-vaping roadshow will now be targeting vapers in New York and Chicago is anyone’s guess though hey when you’re on a roll you keep on rolling.
BTW rolling tobacco and unflavoured lit cigarettes are still available for sale in San Francisco with no plans to ban those – after all with all that tax revenue coming in why would they want to ban them…things that make you go ummm.
And don’t forget the Master Settlement Agreement back in 1998 meant tobacco companies would be paying into the coffers of city councils for decades – cash meant for public health but ‘spirited away’ into other ‘uses’.
A case of we can’t allow that tap of ‘free money’ to run dry and to hell with the deaths from tobacco related diseases?
Chicago and New York Next To Ban Flavoured E-liquids?
The eyes of the vaping world will now be focused on the next two cities on the anti flavours hit list.
Chicago City Council is to decide on a ban of ‘all flavoured nicotine e-liquid products‘.
Note this one ignores flavoured tobacco and specifically targets e-liquids and according to the US vape advocacy group Not Blowing Smoke the bill is really about targeting the big bad wolf know as Juul with the brand mentioned an astonishing 25 times in the proposed legislation!
Meanwhile in New York – that has already banned vaping in public spaces – the senate is now turning its’ eye on flavoured e-liquids with Senate Bill S6939B which:
Prohibits the sale or provision of any quantity of electronic liquid used to refill an electronic cigarette or cartridge.
These guys ain’t even targeting flavours – just e-liquid in general for goodness sake – so here’s a useful list of phone numbers to let your senators know you’re feelings on the proposed ban:
BTW I picked this up off the Twitter account of Larry Sharpe – the Libertarian candidate for Mayor of New York 2018…so get dialing 😉
As to whether either of these pieces of legislation will get passed is anyone’s guess but buoyed by their ‘success’ in San Francisco and possibly bankrolled by billionaire Bloomberg – vapers in those cities and indeed across America should be extremely concerned.
And as I said in the piece And the Flavour Of the Month Is…Ban ALL E-liquid Flavours… now really is the time for vapers in America to band together to fight for their right to vape.
For more information on how to get involved checkout these advocacy groups and do it now before it’s too late:
- CASAA – Consumer Advocates for Smoke-Free Alternatives Association
- SFATA: Smoke Free Alternatives Trade Association
- VTA – Vapor Technology Association
- Not Blowing Smoke
- Adults Like Flavours
- American Vaping Association
Incidentally Patrick Reynolds from the Foundation for Smokefree America who is also the grandson of the founder of Big Tobacco company R.J. Reynolds – and who fought to get the San Fransisco ban made it very clear his group in particular was targeting vapers:
Big tobacco sees vaping as their future.
They are very afraid this is going to pass and if the voters make an informed decision to side with the health community, it will lead to hopefully a tidal wave of cities doing what SF did because the FDA did nothing.
We will start to turn the tide against vaping.
Listen it’s quite simple – until somehow we get clear blue water between vaping and the tobacco industry the door is left wide open for overzealous health activists to target vaping – tarring it with the same brush if you like.
How the hell we do that is anyone’s guess – but Big Tobacco constantly muddying the waters isn’t helping one little bit.
Well it’s helping them…
If they get a complete e-liquid flavour ban and even a ban on flavoured tobacco that means the only alternative is plain lit tobacco…
A win win for Big Tobacco and a death sentence for America.
Shame on them all.
Could a Flavour Ban Come To Britain?
I doubt it but who knows in these crazy times we live in – and Big Tobacco of all people has recently begun fueling the flavour debate here in the UK.
At the Science and Technology Committee inquiry in all things e-cigarette back in March this year – a panel of ‘experts’ from Big Tobacco were asked about their thoughts on e-liquid flavourings.
Apart from attacking short fills as a ‘health concern’ and suggesting that most e-liquid mixologists had no idea what a flavour was [yes really] they virtue signaled their concerns at flavours they say are targeted towards children!
Dr Grant O’Connell, Regulatory and Scientific Affairs, Fontem Ventures – the makers of e-cig brand Blu and under their sister brand Imperial Tobacco produce lit cigarettes such as Lambert and Butler and John Player told UK MPs:
We see that flavours are important in attracting smokers to the category and retaining them, to prevent relapse. That does not detract from concerns about flavours potentially being attractive to children.
We would say that there should not be blanket bans on flavours per se, but responsible marketing approaches. We would be very happy to discuss an appropriate naming convention for e-liquids.
The bubble gums and cotton candies are unacceptable, for example.</span
It’s pretty rich any tobacco company using the ‘protect the children’ argument around vaping for obvious bloody reasons.
One thing is clear and that is vapers in America have one hell of a fight on their hands and now really is the time to make a stand and protect YOUR right to vape.
After San Fransisco the next dominoes to fall could be Chicago and New York and the only way you can stop that is to take action NOW before its too late.