FDA

FDA's Vaping Regulations Will Hurt Smokers Trying to Quit

Because lawmakers didn't understand that the future might bring new, better products, we'll soon be stuck with only the old, dirty options.

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picture alliance / Frank May/Newscom

Electronic cigarettes are now the most popular technique used by Americans who want to quit smoking. But that pathway could close later this year, thanks to shortsighted federal regulations that effectively prevent innovation.

When Congress passed the Tobacco Control Act in 2009, few electronic cigarettes were on the market. Under the terms of that law, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) would have the authority to approve or deny any new tobacco products introduced after February 15, 2007, while products that had been on the market before that so-called "predicate date" would be free from the new level of scrutiny.

That works out fine for cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, and other items that have been around a long time, but it effectively froze the market. Any new products—including almost all vaping devices and the nicotine-laced liquids used in those devices—would have to go through an expensive and vague regulatory process before being offered to consumers.

The deadline for filing those applications is November 8 of this year, unless Congress and the FDA act to change the rules and let e-cigarettes remain on the market.

Greg Conley, president of the American Vaping Association, explains it like this. If you have not filed a retroactive application for any vapor product that has come to market since 2007—which is every single product on the market today—your product is banned. If you file an application before November 8, and the FDA doesn't like what you have included, you're banned. If you file an application on November 8, and the FDA hasn't ruled on that application by November 8, 2019, you are banned.

"So you could spend millions and millions of dollars to try to comply with very vague requirements that have been put out by the FDA, and the FDA could still simply never review your application or just turn it down for an arbitrary reason," Conley said at a recent forum sponsored by the American Enterprise Institute. The FDA's own economic analysis of the regulation suggests that 98 percent of all e-cigarette products will not apply to stay on the market.

That's bad news for vaping businesses, but it's also bad news for Americans hoping to stop smoking cigarettes.

According to research from the Center for Disease Control, 35 percent of Americans who sought to quit smoking from 2014-2016 used electronic cigarettes as a substitute. Vaping allows would-be smokers to get a hit of nicotine and to maintain the same physical routine, while avoiding the dangerous chemicals and soot that come from burning tobacco and inhaling it into their lungs. Compared to other methods used to quit smoking, the CDC reports, e-cigarettes are the most popular, beating out nicotine gum, anti-smoking patches, and FDA-approved medications such as Zyban and Chantix:

Centers for Disease Control; https://www.cdc.gov/pcd/issues/2017/16_0600.htm

Killing the majority of vaping products currently available on the market while leaving cigarettes available is almost certain to drive some e-cigarette users back to combustible tobacco options. That means the FDA—the very government agency that claims it is "responsible for protecting the public health" and "for advancing the public health by helping to speed innovations"—will be banning innovative products that are helping Americans improve their health. They'll be doing that because Congress, a decade ago, made an arbitrary decision that tobacco products made after 2007 should have to face a different level of scrutiny than those that came earlier.

Imagine how a similar rule would effect any other industry. What would computers look like today if Congress decided in 1999 to force any new microchip-using devices to jump through additional regulatory hurdles while leaving older models on the market? What car would you be driving today if any innovations to internal combustion engines were banned in the 1970s?

It's the same story with electronic cigarettes. Because lawmakers lacked the foresight to understand that the future might bring new, better products, Americans might soon be stuck with only the old, dirty options.

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30 responses to “FDA's Vaping Regulations Will Hurt Smokers Trying to Quit

  1. Just goes to show that cigarettes aren’t as bad as you think. I mean, what else, right?

    1. I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life.

      This is what I do… http://www.onlinecareer10.com

    2. I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life.

      This is what I do… http://www.onlinecareer10.com

  2. Another law based not on science, but appearances.
    It looks like a cigarette, so it must be evil. Never mind that the liquid may not even contain nicotine, it must be evil, and we must regulate it out of existence.
    Of course, many vaporizers do not even look like cigarettes, but people inhale and exhale, and are enjoying themselves. Oh, this can never be!
    I guess if you can have asset forfeiture in the face of the fourth amendment, you can use tobacco control against things that have no tobacco.
    Next up; making conservatives illegal because they look like smokers, but without the smoke.

    1. Another law based not on science, but [tobacco lobbying]

      FTFY

      1. You’d be surprised… Big tobacco is actually on “our side”, as they have a vested interest in this industry. It’s big Pharma thats really trying to kill the industry.

        http://www.washingtonexaminer……le/2539441

  3. Because lawmakers lacked the foresight to understand that the future might bring new, better products…

    Or there might be something else at work in our capital. But, if vapers wanted to be able to bring new products to the market, maybe their lobbyists should have been doing a better job making it worth regulators’ while.

  4. GEEZE!!!

  5. It would be a tragic mistake if vaping products were banned. This is a good example of government interference in our lives.

    1. The “tragic mistake” is already in full swing – while FDA regs will kill many products and innovations, states and cities across the nation have already banned vaping everywhere that tobacco is banned, and more and more occur every day, with justifications as flimsy as “it looks like smoking”, and with no outcry.

      Vaping, no matter how perfected, will never be as satisfying as the real thing. If there is no use advantage to vaping – in other words, one suffers the same indignity and restrictions of use as with tobacco products – there really is no incentive to completely quit the real thing.

      Yes, the pending FDA regs need to be stopped. But unless the “banning as tobacco” movement is stopped and reversed, vaping will not replace tobacco.

  6. Happy Independence Day!

  7. There is a lawsuit brewing in here.
    Outlawing something that has no tobacco in it, under a tobacco regulation law.
    Are the elements even there to regulate e-cigarettes?

    1. Are surely as you can arrested with a tobacco pipe, since it’s ‘drug paraphernalia’ until proven otherwise.

    2. One would love to think that a lawsuit might stop this. In theory, it should. In reality?

      Many years ago, here in South Carolina, many challenged local smoking bans legality under this bit of state law:

      “SECTION 16-17-504 Implementation; local laws.

      (A) Sections 16-17-500, 16-17-502, and 16-17-503 must be implemented in an equitable and uniform manner throughout the State and enforced to ensure the eligibility for and receipt of federal funds or grants the State receives or may receive relating to the sections. Any laws, ordinances, or rules enacted pertaining to tobacco products may not supersede state law or regulation. Nothing herein shall affect the right of any person having ownership or otherwise controlling private property to allow or prohibit the use of tobacco products on such property.”

      And yet, the South Carolina Supreme Court upheld the smoking bans. They ignored written law because of the scare of second hand smoke – a scare that, with critical research, is seen to be a load of shit. But the point is they ignored written law. I don’t hold out any hope that any court will strike down the FDA regs, because safety!

  8. The orange buffoon will make sure american tobacco jobs come back… none of this imported quitting crap.

    And you don’t need no stinking net neutrality, neither. Throttled internet speeds will be a tremendous boon to job creators with a few tax breaks. That I can tell you.

  9. Oh no, you mean I’ll need to order my supplies from Canada! Say it ain’t so!

    1. Oh, and if you think ‘Big Tobacco’ has big lobby firms in their pocket they don’t have shit on this other very interested group, who currently ‘enjoy’ a lot of power within Government.

      Compared to other methods used to quit smoking, the CDC reports, e-cigarettes are the most popular, beating out nicotine gum, anti-smoking patches, and FDA-approved medications such as Zyban and Chantix

      Finally, something Tobacco firms and Big Pharma have in common. And, by the way, Chantix might make you kill yourself. Nice.

    2. You mean Washington doesn’t control Canada??
      How and when did this happen?

  10. I make my own fluid from over the counter, pharmaceutical grade chemicals. I have been exclusively vaping for almost 3 years after having smoked cigarettes for over 55 years. It costs me less than $10 to make the equivalent of a carton of cigarettes of fluid.

  11. 2% e-cigarette fluid:

    (All fluids must be USP grade)

    59 ml Propylene Glycol
    39 ml Glycerine
    2 ml Nicotinic Acid

    Makes approximately 1 cup of fluid (unflavored) which is the equivalent of nearly 3 cartons of cigarettes.
    A few drops of oil of cinnamon or oil of cloves can be added.

    1. No, never add oil to e-liquid! Vaping oil can cause lipid pnemonia. There are safe flavorings available. Extracts and oils are NOT safe. Let’s not give vaping a bad name; educate yourself at reddit.com/r/diy_ejuice

  12. Congress, a decade ago, made an arbitrary decision that tobacco products made after 2007 should have to face a different level of scrutiny than those that came earlier.

    Imagine how a similar rule would affect any other industry.

    Congress has made that decision several times re drugs. They tighten the rules but grandfather existing products. I’m sure that’s happened to lots of other industries too, & in many states & countries.

  13. There has been another option, that would have been approved years ago to aid in stopping smoking. It is Nicotrol. A nicotine inhaler. A doctor prescription was needed when I used it, but not every doctor knew of it, and when told, some became angry.

  14. Will DJT appoint a new FDA Commish so that the draining may commence?

  15. Will DJT appoint a new FDA Commish so that the draining may commence?

  16. And if there weren’t the obnoxious cloud chasers, we’d have a chance to get non-vapers to join us in fighting this

    1. Actually, I’m just being b#^chy. This will screw a few members of my family over in a big way

  17. Someone has to fill the prison cells formerly occupied by marijuana smokers…

  18. There are a lot of information related to smoker people. Some very interesting facts related to vaping regulations will hurt somker. Good piece of information for all smokers. To be fair smoking is not good for health.

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