Vape News In Brief: August 28th, 2018 Edition
Vape News In Brief: August 28th, 2018 Edition
*VNIB* is a semi-regular column in which we take a look around the globe, searching for news, science, and the occasional pop culture reference related to vaping and the life of vapers. Today, let's talk about…
…the Philippines, where the nation's House of Representatives last week voted unanimously in favor of a resolution urging the Department of Health to promote tobacco harm reduction measures, including the use of vapor products. In expressing their support, legislators cite evidence that while vaping is both popular and promoted in the UK, smoking rates are still falling there. Filipinos were widely regarded as some of the most skilled mechanical mod makers when mech vaping was the industry standard, though the scene has fallen on hard times under what some have called a directive to "quit or die" from smoking cigarettes under President Rodrigo Duterte.
In the wake of the bombshell UK Parliamentary report we told you about last week, the Irish government is being lobbied to hold back on launching any new excise taxes for vapor products in the upcoming year's budget. In further support of the anti-tax crusade, we're just now learning about a 2017 Healthy Ireland Survey that found, among other things, that a full 99% of the country's 150,000 vapers are ex-smokers. What's more, 37% of smokers who launched successful quit attempts credit vaping for their success. This still qualifies as anecdotal rather than scientific evidence, but it's encouraging nonetheless.
Coming soon: researchers are set to unveil some new findings that suggest vaping may modifyl DNA in the oral cells of users – these changes may over extended exposure lead to the development of certain cancers. For now, the research focuses on people who vape and people who neither vape nor smoke, rendering the findings relatively useless for people seeking a reduced-harm alternative to combustible tobacco. Still, we'll be watching for more details to emerge, and the study authors already say they're planning to follow up with a program designed to elicit more conclusive results.
It's official: Juuling has been banned in Israel. The country represents one of the first foreign markets the company has attempted to enter. Juul is preparing to set up shop in London, but the UK still abides by EU regulations that limit nicotine content in e-liquid to 20 mg/ml – four or five times as much as conventional vapers use, but still just a third as potent as the typical Juul pod. The San Francisco-based outfit has announced that lower-nicotine options are coming, but so far only in the less-popular tobacco and menthol flavors. Fruit and dessert flavors for US consumers will continue to carry nicotine ratings of 50 mg/ml or even higher for the time being.
We reported a few weeks ago on the partial reversal of Pennsylvania's crippling 40% vapor tax. Now, Bloomberg has an interesting look at some of the details of the court decision. E-liquids, of course, are still subject to the tax, as are disposable liquid-filled cigalikes. But did you know that if you were to purchase a mod starter kit, containing everything you need except liquid, you'd be subject to the tax while someone purchasing the same mod and tank separately wouldn't?
Despite extensive evidence that flavoring in e-liquids is instrumental in helping adults quit smoking (we'll have more on this coming very soon), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a warning citing "worry" (but not evidence) that the availability of flavored e-liquids is causing youth to take up vaping and/or smoking. The study cites Nielsen sales figures, but admits that neither online nor brick-and-mortar vape shops, where the majority of products are sold, are considered when compiling data. While the CDC's concern will certainly play into the discussion when authorities consider an outright ban on flavored vapor products, there is a slightly less-complicated solution that will likely be overlooked: enforce existing age-restriction laws on tobacco and vapor products.
Full circle: the original design of vapor products relied heavily on medical inhalers and nebulizers, devices which convert medicine into an inhalable aerosol suspended in propylene glycol (the same PG that's in your e-liquid). Now, this guy is using advancements in vapor technology to revolutionize the medical nebulizer, making it nearly as small and user friendly as a personal vaporizer. We could do without the "no health value whatsoever" knock on our industry, but otherwise this is an interesting piece.
Other than size, shape, and contents, it can be frustratingly difficult to tell the difference between a bottle of e-liquid and, say, a box of cookies. Luckily, the FDA is here to help – they've convinced 17 different e-liquid manufacturers to change their packaging to stop it from closely resembling the food product their flavor mimics. Snark aside, this is probably a good thing – it's hard to convince even the most objective observer you're not creating a product for kids when your marketing imagery contains cartoon characters or blatant rip-offs of logos for products your juice is imitating.
We'll stop here for now, check back for more soon at the same completely different vape time, same (yes, really) vape channel!