They’re everywhere: e-cigarettes. Within the last few years e-cig use has surged, but that could change because a new ban is pulling most flavors off the market. The Trump administration will prohibit fruit, candy, mint and dessert flavors from small, cartridge-based e-cigarettes that are popular with high school students. The goal is to try to stop teen vaping in the U.S. Menthol and tobacco-flavored e-cigarettes will remain on the market.
“Make no mistake. This is an historic day,” Brett Giroir, assistant secretary of health within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, said.
Blueberry lemon, mango, grape. These sound like flavors you can order in a dessert or even soda pop, but now the FDA is taking these e-cigarette flavors off the menu. Blown Away Vape & Glass owner, Sandra Williams-Luther, isn’t surprised by Thursday’s announcement.
“I’m actually relieved, because they didn’t go out with a full ban,” Williams-Luther said.
Williams-Luther is referring to vape-juices her customers buy and can load into their re-fillable vaping devices. These are exempt from the ban, because the Department of Health and Human Services say mostly adult customers use these. The Trump administration says the ban strikes a compromise.
“We’re going to enforce against e-cigarette products that appeal to children,” Giroir said.
But the American Lung Association says children and teens will find a way around the restrictions.
“There’s a quick hack that’s on YouTube and other platform that shows kids how to refill these cartridges,” Erika Sward, the American Lung Association, said
Williams-Luther says the cartridges have been problematic, but has long maintained the re-fillable vape juices have helped many of her customers quit smoking because they can choose their level of nicotine.
“I can see such improvement in people when they quit smoking. They feel better about themselves, their health is better,” Williams-Luther said.
She says the ban will change things for a lot of stores, but doesn’t see it killing the vaping industry.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen next. We’ll just see,” Williams-Luther said.
Beginning in early February, companies will not be allowed to manufacture, distribute or sell unauthorized flavored cartridge-based e-cigarettes. Williams-Luther is waiting for direction on what to do with the cartridges her store sells.