Game Changer, California, e-cig explodes, e-cigs harmful?, Future Regulation

E-cigs could be a game changer

The tobacco industry has long searched for a holy grail – a product that would give nicotine addicts their fix without also causing disease and death.

The jury is still out on whether e-cigarettes could be that change. Public health groups are highly skeptical, but few doubt that the technology represents a potential sea change.

Some industry observers view e-cigs as potentially the most disruptive force to hit the U.S. tobacco industry since the invention of the cigarette rolling machine.

The market potential for e-cigs has become big enough that major tobacco companies are now entering the category, and even the world’s largest tobacco leaf company has announced plans to become a supplier of nicotine for e-cigs.

While still only a small portion of the overall $80 billion U.S. cigarette market, e-cig sales could surpass traditional cigarette sales within the next decade as cigarette sales continue to decline while e-cig sales grow.

Analysts with Goldman Sachs wrote in late 2012 that if the e-cig market takes off, “there is potential for a big shake-up in the tobacco hierarchy.”

Altria Group consumer research shows that about 50 percent of adult cigarette smokers are interested in alternative products.

California city governments pondering what to do about E-cigs

Seal Beach, Calif., recently passed a 45-day moratorium halting any new e-cigarette and smoke shops from opening in the small beach community.

With fresh memories of how rapidly marijuana dispensaries multiplied and generated controversy, many cities want to slow the spread of electronic cigarette stores until they can figure out the ramifications.

For Jim Basham, Seal Beach's director of community development, the distinguishing line between pot dispensaries and vaping outlets is a bit blurry. He's seen e-cigarette stores evolve into hemp shops — and draw with them a ragtag crowd.

"You have other folks with different intentions," Basham said, "and you can have secondary adverse effects, like crime."

In August, Temple City passed a zoning ordinance that keeps all smoke shops, including those that sell only e-cigarettes, at least 1,000 feet from parks and schools. About a month earlier, Duarte passed an urgency ordinance that temporarily halted any new shops from opening there. And the city of Pico Rivera passed an ordinance that treats the vapor devices like traditional cigarettes.

Some city officials said they want more information about the devices and their health effects.

"I'm not saying you're going to die and go to hell if you use them," said Pico Rivera Councilman Gregory Salcido, who backed the city's decision to treat the devices as regular cigarettes. "But we don't know enough about them, and as a result we're going to cover our bases."

E-cig exploded, Atlanta woman claims

One Atlanta woman claims she's happy to be alive after a very difficult electronic smoking experience.

As WSB-TV reports, Elizabeth Wilkowski is sure that what she experienced was no ordinary event.

"I didn't hear a boom. It wasn't a pop. It was a kaboom!" she said.

Wilkowski claims that she had simply plugged the e-cigarette into her computer's USB port in order to charge it.

This particular e-cigarette was a Seego EHit, manufactured in China.

Are e-cigs harmful? Nobody knows for sure

The jury is still out on whether vaping is dangerous. And there are still plenty of conflicting opinions.

“People are inhaling some type of chemical vaporized compound into their lungs without really knowing what's in it," said Dr. Mike Feinstein, a spokesman for the American Lung Association.

Last year, the American Lung Association issued its own warning about e-cigarettes: “This is a buyer stay-away, a buyer health hazard, potentially."

Dr. Robert Greene, who treats lung cancer patients at Florida’s Palm Beach Cancer Institute, said the product is potentially a health hazard. “There really is no information about whether they're safe or not, and that's part of the problem," said Greene.

He says with no real data on e-cigarettes, the three-year-old tobacco alternative may actually be more harmful that traditional cigarettes.

"The doses of nicotine that you get could conceivably be higher than what you would get in a typical cigarette," said Greene.

According to the Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association, e-cigarettes contain just five ingredients, all approved by the FDA. Recently, the FDA announced it will begin to regulate e-cigarettes as a tobacco product.

Future of e-cigs hinges on regulation

There’s been little research done on e-cigarettes, but among those studying the devices is Dr. Greg Connolly, professor of public health at Harvard University.

The future of e-cigarettes, Connolly said, hinges on how the FDA approaches regulation of them.

"This could be a tool — if it's regulated correctly — to help end dependence on cigarettes and nicotine. This is probably the best quitting device known to man," said Connolly, who co-authored an early study on e-cigarettes.

But they just as easily could become a means to hook more people on nicotine, he said.

If the technology continues to develop...they could become even more addictive than the conventional cigarette — that's frightening," Connolly said.

Connolly plans to publish research on a set of habit-forming compounds, or so-called "super juices," that have been in conventional cigarettes like Merit and Marlboro since the late 1970s — and that he has found to be present in some popular e-cigarettes.

These super juices — which aren't present in nicotine gum or patches — could help make e-cigarettes a more effective quitting aid because they would deliver the kick of a regular cigarette, Connolly said. And like the patch, he said, users could wean themselves off nicotine by stepping down the dosage — that is, provided e-cigarettes are regulated such that graduated doses of nicotine are required to be availed.

But Connolly, who has served on FDA's Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee, said the agency does not seem poised to regulate e-cigarettes as a quitting aid. Rather, he said, FDA seems headed toward regulating them as tobacco products, which would leave the companies free to market the highest allowable dosages and essentially assure an ongoing supply of addicts or customers.

"FDA seems to be poised to ban Internet sales, which is exactly what (big tobacco companies) want," Connolly said. "That will only destroy competition and hand the market over to (the big three companies) whose only mission is to make the most addictive product they can."

The three major companies are Lorillard, Philip Morris, and Reynolds American.


Vapor Dynasty Expo Storms Phoenix Oct. 24-26

VaporDynasty2014The Phoenix Convention Center is going to be even hotter in late October when the Vapor Dynasty Expo comes to town. Oct. 24-26 will be filled with featured guest speakers, including Michael Guasch of Molecule Labs, Lou Ritter of AEMSA and Joe Barnett of The Vaping Militia. B2B and B2C sessions, a Modder Kombat tournament and a cash grab booth will be on hand for the public. More than 150 exhibitors will fill the expo floor, the first of its kind to come to Phoenix.

Since the expo is so close to Halloween, wear a costume and win a prize! All-day costume party participants will be entered to win juice, mods and more.

For more information, visit http://www.vapordynastyexpo.com/.

Utah Cracks Down on Online E-Cig Marketers, Claims False Advertising

UtahConsumerProtectionThe Salt Lake Tribune reports that the Utah Division of Consumer Protection has filed charges against Vapex LLC, Sinless Vapor LLC and OZN Web LLC  for violating the Sales Practices Act.

According to the entity, the companies made false claims and offered free product trials, “which in reality were not free as the online marketers racked up pricey automatic shipments to credit cards without consumers’ knowledge or their consent.” This consisted of 451 claimed violations.

The three companies face fines of more than $1.1 million.

For the full story, http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/money/58343358-79/utah-act-consumer-llc.html.csp.

Can You Name the Next Big Vaping Trend?

Photo by CityLab.comThe vaping industry is moving at lightning speed, and even though there are daily changes, everyone always wants to know what the next trend will be.

Cspnet.com and Tobacco E-News also took a closer look, stating that tanks and liquids were all the rage in 2014. But, what’s the new thing going to be?

Management Science Associates senior vice president Don Burke said during the annual CSP Tobacco Category Review Meeting that noncombustible actual tobacco products will be the “in” thing next year. Vaporizers will be used to heat tobacco, but not make it combust. Naturally, Phillip Morris and other Big Tobacco companies agree.

For the full story, visit http://www.cspnet.com/category-news/tobacco/articles/vape-update-heat-not-burn-tobacco.

VAPE Summit Houston Offers Early Bird Pricing

vapesummit_logo_mediumThe Vape Summit in Houston, Texas will be held Nov. 7 and 8 at The NRG Stadium. This just happens to be where the Houston Texans play!

The last Vape Summit, held in Las Vegas at The Hard Rock Hotel on June 13 and 14, was a success. More than 250 vendors exhibited to an attendance of more than 15,000 people. More than 1,000 of those were confirmed buyers and decision makers. Vendors have acquired numerous accounts, multiple pre-sale orders and valuable networking opportunities with manufacturers, distributors and retailers around the world due to Vegas’ Vape Summit.

In addition, the Las Vegas show served as a platform of information. Advocacy leaders in the vaping community were able to speak. Those speakers were Grey Conley, legal counsel for e-cig regulations; Oliver Kershaw, founder of www.e-cigarette-forum.com and a major proponent in combating Regulations in Europe; Doug, Brent, and Cynthia, President of SFATA; Dimitris, “The Vapingreek,” a reviewer and member of multiple advocacy groups; Phil Busardo, a pioneer in the vaping community; and Roy, of Vapelyfe, a profound enthusiast group.

Want more reach?  We are going to be partnering up with SFATA, which provides access to over 60 percent of the vaping industry’s market share.

For a booth space with the Early Bird Special Price, click here:

Sponsorship opportunities also are available.

Former Smokers Unite in E-Cig Solidarity

spikedLogo2013_for_facebookA recent opinion piece in the British publication www.spiked-online.com touts e-cigarettes as “one of the greatest inventions ever.”

The columnist smoked for 20 years before quitting, and he praises vaping as the result of giving up his smoking habit. He calls the campaign against e-cigs “ludicrous” and a symptom of a ban-happy culture that wants to hop too quickly. His argument goes on to say further that e-cigs do not glamorize smoking, in fact he calls them a “miracle cure.”

After a Twitter inquiry, the columnist received tons of feedback from smokers who have turned to vaping to kick the habit.

For the full story, visit http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/e-cigs-one-of-the-greatest-inventions-ever/15764#.VBiZrYUmXx1.

Wyoming City Teens Receiving E-Cig Citations

sheridan2Ecigadvanced.com has news coming out of Sheridan, Wyo. There is a new city bill in effect that makes possession of e-cigarettes by minors illegal.

This is a win for the industry that largely only wants to promote its products to those 18 and over. However, reasoning behind the citations, according to the article, include e-cigs looking like drug paraphernalia and an effort to curb traditional smoking.

So, this begs the question: Would these same teens be cited for smoking analog cigarettes?

E-Cigs Named As Last-Resort Smoking Cessation Product by AHA, But Still Recognized

american-heart-association_200x200If you’re not first, you’re last in many cases, however being last in this case may be better than nothing at all. The American Heart Association says that vaping is a last-resort method to quit smoking, however the AHA recognizes it as a method, nonetheless.

AssociationsNow.com reports that if nothing else works, the AHA has given its stamp of approval to vaping. While it still feels that vaping includes tobacco, therefore is recommending the FDA treat e-cigs in the same regard, the AHA says vaping is a less harmful means than cigarettes. This could mean a step in the right direction for the vaping world.

For the full story, visit http://associationsnow.com/2014/08/heart-association-cancer-society-see-e-cigarettes-last-resort/.

E-Cigs and Kids—How Do You Play Keep Away?

Photo by vvng.com.According to a recent USAToday.com article, more than 263,000 kids tried e-cigarettes in 2013.

While the industry may be doing its part to sway kids from being tempted to try vaping, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention sees things a bit differently. Their newest study says that more than a quarter million adolescents and teens who have never smoked used an electronic cigarette in 2013.

The story goes on to say that “among non-smoking youth who had tried electronic cigarettes, 43.9 percent said they intended to smoke conventional cigarettes within the next year, compared with 21.5 percent of those who had never used e-cigarettes.”

Personal Vaporizer Market Continues to Grow, Primed to Overtake Traditional E-Cigarettes

210It’s no secret that everyone is fighting for shelf space right now, from Big Tobacco, to smaller e-cigarette companies, to vaporizers, to hookahs and everyone in between. Stockhouse.com reports that while Blu e-cig sales are dropping, the vapor category as a whole is on the rise.

Convenience stores still rank as a huge place to buy e-cigarettes, but personal vaporizers are making waves in the industry. Everyone wants to be seen as an individual, and it’s showing in overall sales. Even though traditional e-cigarettes still are a $1.4 billion industry, vaporizers are hot on the heels at $1.1 billion.

The article notes that customized vaporizers allow vapers to adjust nicotine levels and varying flavors, whereas with e-cigs you get what you get. Retailers are taking note and making shelf space for a larger variety of options.

For the full story, visit http://www.stockhouse.com/news/press-releases/2014/08/25/as-e-cigs-begin-to-take-a-back-seat-to-vaporizers-the-market-looks-for-a-leader.

Reynolds American Urges E-Cig Ban ‘FDA Should Not Allow Such Products to be Sold or Marketed’

reynolds-american_200x200Reynolds American has drawn the line in the sand, urging the FDA to wholly ban e-cigarettes in a 119-page submission to the institution.

JournalNow.com reports that Reynolds’ spokesman David Howard said that e-cigs should not be sold or even marketed as they pose “unique health risks” to the general public. Arguments include e-liquid being marketed to minors, overall tampering subjectivity and being manufactured largely overseas in unregulated factories.

Reynolds then asked for equal treatment in the product category, yet another sign that they can’t compete in the e-cigarette world, according to Gregory Conley, president of the American Vaping Association.

For the full story, visit http://www.journalnow.com/business/business_news/local/big-tobacco-makers-want-fda-to-ban-vapor-e-cigs/article_77b131f5-540d-5f02-927c-733bac751529.html.