FDA Doing Its Part To Protect Tobacco Companies

With the number of restrictions placed on cigarettes as well as the general attitude the State seems to have towards them you would think it would give tremendous support to anything that helped people stop smoking. But those restrictions aren’t in place to stop people from smoking but to protect cigarette companies from competition. Electronic cigarettes have become very popular in the last few years, especially with people who want to stop smoking. In fact I would argue that electronic cigarettes have done more shake the cigarette industry than any government regulation. It is this effectiveness that has likely encouraged the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to write up regulations that will effectively destroy a majority of electronic cigarette sellers:

When Randy Freer was trying to quit smoking, he wanted to try vaping-—battery-operated devices that deliver nicotine by vaporizing liquids. (Some ex-smokers find the combo of the flavors and the ability to dial down the nicotine helps them quit.) But Freer found he couldn’t keep a supply of the vaporizers he liked—they were always out of stock.

So being the entrepreneurial type, he created his own e-liquids to vape. In 2012, he launched P.O.E.T. (Pursuit of Excellent Taste), a small business based in Seal Beach, California, that sells e-liquids. Three years later, he says his company sells to some 130 stores internationally as well as online, and has $500,000 in annual sales.

But all that could disappear if the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), as expected, finalizes its rules on e-cigarettes and other vaping products. The rules would require federal approval for most flavored liquid nicotine juices and e-cig devices sold in vape shops.

“If that [FDA rule] goes through, it’ll put me back into the job market,” Freer says.

He and practically everyone else in the vaping business. According to one estimate, the approval process would require such an extensive data collection for each item that it could businesses cost $2 million to $10 million, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Anybody familiar with the medical market knows how expensive and time consuming getting FDA approval is. Most vape shops mix their own juices as a means of differentiating themselves from their numerous competitors. If they were required to get their juices approved by the FDA they would be forced out of business, which is likely the point of the proposed regulations.

Electronic cigarettes have been eating the traditional cigarette market by offering the same product, nicotine, in a much healthier and cheaper delivery method. If the FDA was interested in abolishing the traditional cigarette market it would leave things be but the State has always been a friend of traditional tobacco companies. The regulations that already exist on cigarettes have ensured established manufacturers remain protected from new competitors. It was only with the invention of electronic cigarettes, a radically different method of delivering nicotine, that a real threat entered the market. And soon that sole threat may be gone and traditional cigarettes will be able to stop worrying.

Fortunately electronic cigarettes and juices are simple to produce. In fact there is a huge do-it-yourself movement in the electronic cigarette market. Many people create their own electronic cigarettes and juices. Some of them start vape shops. If they regulations go through these people will likely continue doing what they’ve been doing and more people will likely pick up the do-it-yourself attitude.

Just keep in mind, if these regulations go through, that whenever the State bitches about traditional cigarettes causing numerous health issues that it was the single reason the most effective alternative was pushed out of the market.

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