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The Current War on Flavors
Anti-vape organizations have been waging a so-called “War on Flavors.” Put simply, these organizations are pushing for the FDA to make more regulations against flavored tobacco products, including e-liquids. Their main reasoning for doing so is related to the rise of e-cig use amongst younger populations.
The Argument Against Flavor
In the past, tobacco companies used flavors and gimmicks to target younger audiences. Anti-vape organizations are now saying that vape e-liquids are capitalizing on this fact. Their claim is that the allure of flavors like crème brulee and fruit medley are causing more and more youths start vaping. Not helping the case for vaping activists is the new trend among teenagers called “Juuling.” A Juul is a small device that is like a flavorful vape pen, which teenagers are using to get a quick buzz. Additionally, a particularly damning study found that most teens who use vape products do not think that they are doing anything more than inhaling flavoring.
Many advocates for vaping and e-cigarette devices tout the studies that show that vaping is the current number one way for many people to quit smoking. They state that it is often the variety of flavors available that help smokers quit for good. Further, what is the difference between an appealing vape flavor and, say, an alcoholic beverage that tastes like apple cider? Yes, vaping is dangerous for kids. So are a lot of other things that they do. No one on the pro-vape side of the argument is stating that kids should vape. They are merely stating that flavored e-liquids are not the problem; kids have always experimented with taboo or illegal items. Finally, what if the kids that are currently vaping were already going to smoke and have instead chosen vaping over traditional cigarettes? From a harm-reduction model standpoint, vaping is far less dangerous than smoking and therefore a better option. Removing an option simply because of its appeal is just going to cause someone to choose another option.
The vaping industry lives and dies on flavored e-liquids. A legislation that bans flavored e-liquid is sure to kill the vaping industry. Who wants to vape a flavorless product? If the vaping industry wants to survive, then they need to work on their own effective response for this proposed legislation.
Curiously enough, while the U.S. is trying to make vaping less accessible altogether, other countries are researching the benefits to vaping. Why is there so much hate on vaping in the U.S.?
If you are interested in a more in-depth look at the possible outcomes of e-liquid regulations, read this blog.