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California Vapers Flavor Bans Will Force Users Back To Smoking

California Vapers Flavor Bans Will Force Users Back To Smoking


California Vapers Flavor Bans Will Force Users Back To Smoking

Recent attempts to curb smoking by local governments in California have widened anti-smoking laws to include vapor products. Recently, several California city ordinances have targeted flavored tobacco products, including flavored e-liquids. Naturally, these make for very unpopular proposals in the vapor community due to the popularity of flavors among ex-smokers.

On the face of these ordinances, there are good intentions from lawmakers generally uninformed about the ins and outs of vaping: less access to nicotine products means less nicotine users. As is often the case, however, there exist an abundance of downsides to critique. Vapor advocates argue that these proposed laws would lead many ex-smokers to return to combustible cigarettes, and that they're incongruent given the state’s permissive attitude toward marijuana products.

"At the end of the day, it's an adult product," Ray Story, CEO of Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association told CNN, adding that the new ordinance "makes no sense" in a state which "in the next days will allow any type of marijuana" to be sold, including flavored edible products such as brownies and candy chews.


Spearheaded by San Francisco and Oakland, a handful of other cities in the northern half of the state have pitched or passed laws to prohibit the sale of flavored e-liquids under the presumption that colorful packaging and whimsical naming conventions target younger people specifically. This attitude lends itself to the logic of the “gateway” theory, where youth who are first exposed to vapor products go on to become users of combustible tobacco.

Unfortunately for the advocates of the ordinances, no evidence currently exists that would support the idea that a ban against lower-risk nicotine products will benefit anyone. If the individual is looking to use a lower-risk option to aid in their smoking cessation, it seems counterproductive to take that option away.

These cities have chosen to restrict options, rather than working with scientific studies to find appropriate alternatives to prevent deadly diseases. The Consumer Advocates for Smoke Free Alternatives Association (CASAA) reminds, “We need to emphasize that banning low-risk, smoke-free products is NOT based on evidence.”


Contrary to arguments for California’s push to outlaw some vapor products, in the last year there have been a number of studies that have shown that vapor helps people quit smoking. For instance In January, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine issued an advisory opinion to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) showing that e-cigarettes could be life-savers.

"E-cigarette aerosol contains fewer numbers and lower levels of most toxicants than smoke from combustible tobacco cigarettes does," wrote University of Washington toxicologist David Eaton, who authored the report. "Laboratory tests of e-cigarette ingredients, in vitro toxicological tests, and short-term human studies suggest that e-cigarettes are likely to be far less harmful than combustible tobacco cigarettes.”

Additionally, longtime anti-smoking advocates like Michael Siegel and Dr. Konstantinos E. Farsalinos have conducted numerous experiments debunking anti-vapor studies, and have shown time and again that vapor can be used as a successful cessation tool for smokers looking to quit.