Taking a Look at The Smoke Free Alternatives Trade Association

Taking a Look at The Smoke Free Alternatives
Trade Association

By Cynthia Cabrera, SFATA Executive Director

 

The e-cig industry is a disruptor, turning the tobacco industry on its head,
empowering consumers and creating a new multi-billion dollar industry. But, in the
long run who will be able to reap the windfall brought on by this nascent industry?

The World Health Organization, the Center for Disease Control and the Surgeon
General have for many years agreed that tobacco use is harmful, and in particular, that
smoking tobacco cigarettes is very harmful in various ways. Despite the well-known dangers
of cigarette smoking and the public policy arguments in favor of reducing tobacco consumption such as lower health care costs, efforts to reduce tobacco consumption have not been as effective as one would expect over the past several decades. Reducing tobacco use is a significant benefit that has the potential to change our society for the better and an objective that the FDA and anti-smoking groups across the globe have been trying to achieve for decades.

I believe a major problem right now is that FDA and anti smoking groups seem to view vapers and the act of vaping as indistinguishable from smokers and smoking when the two are in reality very different things. Given the stigma smoking has earned, and the harm it causes, there is a strong push by FDA, various Attorney Generals, and legislators at the federal, state and local levels. These groups and individuals confuse smoking with vaping and attempt to regulate vaporizers in the exact same manner as cigarettes. This doesn’t make sense, and would be a huge mistake on many levels as it would unfairly stifle the industry, deny millions of adults an alternative to tobacco and stifle one of the most prolific segments of our economy.  That’s bad news for an industry that’s largely comprised of small companies and entrepreneurially-minded individuals

The Smoke Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA) exists in part to help educate smaller and mid-sized companies as to what we consider to be acceptable advertising, manufacturing and marketing protocols and to serve as a powerful voice for them in our nation’s capital as well as in their own backyards where many of them are being unfairly treated as though they were tobacco companies. 

At SFATA we are constantly engaging and educating regulatory officials and legislators at the federal, state and local level on behalf of our members. Our membership grows each month as more companies look to collaborate to achieve common goals and to obtain guidance and support as the industry expands and become more complicated.

To date, SFATA is the largest e-cig trade association and is comprised of sophisticated companies in the industry who are looking to work together to help protect common interests.  Business owners and consumers of e-cigs and e-cig accessories can help in a variety of ways:

Become a member of SFATA. While different companies may not always agree on every initiative, as some affect others differently in the marketplace, its important to have an industry that speaks with a unified voice on the issues that everyone agrees are most important. SFATA is committed to engaging with government agencies and elected officials in an effective manner—to communicate industry messages that smaller and mid-size businesses would not normally able to convey. We employ FDA experts, as well as attorneys and staff who specialize in the areas that affect our industry and are able to be of the most help as they have a profound understanding of the regulatory, legal and business issues that are unique to the vaping community. 
The way consumers and business owners talk about vaping needs to be different.

As a business owner, your message and your right to communicate it, is different than that of a consumer and that’s an important distinction. A consumer can talk about his or her vaping experience with impunity and in ways businesses cannot.

A consumer can advocate about what they see as any benefit vaporizers provide them with. Perhaps the availability of flavors keeps that consumer interested in using his or her personal vaporizing device rather than tobacco cigarettes? Perhaps he or she has cut down use of tobacco cigarettes and have saved money? Perhaps he or she feels better having switched to vaping from smoking. There are many compelling, important and amazing stories that vapers share about how vaping has changed their lives for the better. It’s important that consumers and consumer advocacy groups make those statements so that elected officials, government agencies and others unfamiliar with vaping understand consumers’ point of view. 

Business owners have a responsibility to sell and advertise products as intended and governed by law. While it is fine for consumers to share their personal stories, business should never make or endorse health or smoking cessation claims. Doing so could, arguably, subject such a business to being regulated by the FDA as a tobacco product under the current state of the law.  

Instead, craft your message as a business owner and focus on the economic impact this product has given you. Focus on the jobs you’ve created, the taxes you pay, the properties you rent and how you’ve assisted your community financially.  Attend meetings and stay in tune with what is happening in your community. Visit the SFATA website to get more information about issues in your state. Rally your customers to attend meetings as well; have them share their stories.  It’s important to engage with legislators and be part of the process as they are responsible for making decisions that affect your community and they need to hear from you.

Whatever the case is, consumer or business, advocating for an industry and the right to use new technology requires a lot of work. Consumer and businesses that engage and communicate with lawmakers have the ability to effectuate positive change. Legislators care about and listen to their constituents. Our website has tools to contact elected officials and information business owners can utilize for themselves and relay to their elected officials and communities  in support of the industry.


For more information, visit www.sfata.org.

Blue Orb Vapor Trading Offers Memorial Weekend Discount

unnamedBlue Orb Vapor Trading is offering a discount now between May 25. Customers receive $100 off $1,000 spent, with 25 percent of the proceeds going to Wounded Warriors.

Use the coupon code REDWHITE&BLUEORB to receive the discount.

Blue Orb’s mission is to provide quality e-liquids to vape shops across the globe. The company travels across this big, Blue Orb we call home and find the best e-liquids out there! They are constantly striving to improve and streamline the process and welcome any feedback you have. If you’d like to sample one of Blue Orb’s lines, please email Sales@BlueOrbVapor.com.

Nicotine, E-Cigs Attacked, Cited As Gateway Drug, Vessels

Photo by

Photo by Inquisitr.com

Nicotine and e-cigarettes are “more dangerous than the substance they’re marketed to replace,” says a release posted on the Free Press Release Center by Drug Rehab Chicago, a drug and rehab facility in Chicago. The center claims that vaping is a growing trend among teens in Chicago, and that devices are “new vessels” that teenagers are using to smoke addictive substances. Appealing e-liquid flavors and a designer drug, flakka, are cited as some of the “dangerous pop culture” draws.

The Chicago Tribune went so far as to say that nicotine is a “gateway drug” that leads to other substances such as heroin and cocaine. The Chicago Tribune states, “The case against e-cigarettes concluded that they are harmful and the full impact of their harm is not yet known; that they are marketed toward younger people; and that it is often under-reported that nicotine is a ‘gateway drug’ to other addictions such as cocaine and heroin.”

Drug Rehab associates say that ”The longer we leave the variable of e-cigarettes unaddressed, the more we increase the chances of young people becoming exposed to highly addictive substances right in front of us. Any addictive substance that can be smoked is easily hidden in an e-cigarette. The fact that we, as a collective society, are allowing our children to have steady access to flavored nicotine, the more we encourage their use of a known gateway and addictive drug.”

For the full story, visit http://www.free-press-release-center.info/pr00000000000000303221_chicago-adopts-e-cig-regulation-citing-nicotine-as-a-gateway-drug-to-heroin–cocaine.html.

 

Vaping with Friends: Our Time is Now PSA Released

A new video recently was shared with the Agent. Please take a moment to watch this video and share it with your friends, families and social media outlets. We have to do our part to keep vaping alive, and hopefully, this short inspirational video featuring prominent members of the community will put us one step closer to success. Thank you for you time and dedication.

AskMen Reports: Another New Study Praises E-Cigs Vs. Analogs

imgresEven though some e-cigarette e-liquids contain nicotine, a new German study has come out backing what vapers have been saying all along: e-cigarette vapor is less harmful than cigarette tobacco smoke.

While research has been going back and forth for years, especially during this volitale legislative time, this study only looked at lung tissue from two donors. For study information and results, visit http://www.askmen.com/news/sports/study-finds-e-cigarettes-are-less-harmful-to-lung-tissue.html.

The AskMen article says that e-liquid is not totally harmless, however vapor emitted is safer than cigarette smoke.

 

Madison, Wis. Continues Indoor Vaping Legislative Battle

badgerherald2_logoWhile e-cigarettes are grouped in with the smoking ban in Madison, Wis. the future may look a little different. There is a new bill proposed by Rep. Joel Kleefisch (R-Oconomowoc) that would “prevent local governments from enacting ordinances that would broadly ban e-cigarettes from being used in indoor public spaces,” according to BadgerHerald.com.

Kleefisch’s spokesperson told the news source that individual businesses should decide whether vaping is allowed indoors, not government legislatiion. No scientific proof that vaping is harmful was cited as the main reason.

The decision to add vaping to the overall smoking ban passed in January.

For the full story, visit https://badgerherald.com/news/2015/04/09/bill-would-prevent-local-governments-from-banning-e-cigarettes-in-indoor-public-spaces/.

 

Mistic E-Cigs Sole E-Cig Co-Sponsor in 99th Indianapolis 500

Photo by Indycar.com

Photo by Indycar.com

Mistic E-Cigs, the co-primary sponsor of the No. 11 car in the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series, will be making history again as the only e-cig company to co-sponsor a car running in the 99th Indianapolis 500, also known as “the greatest spectacle in racing.”

In a recent press release, Mistic e-cigs shared that the No. 11 will be piloted by four-time series champ Sebastien Bourdais. KVSH Racing’s No. 11 Indy 500 superspeedway car will feature the HAUS Personal Vaporizer by Mistic logo, along with an updated black and white “shattered” theme highlighted by green- and red-colored accents.

Mistic served as co-primary sponsor of KVSH Racing’s No. 11 car in last year’s Indy 500 driven by Bourdais. Starting P17, the French-born “bespectacled badass” finished an impressive seventh in the annual 200-lap race with an average lap speed of 186.511 mph. Bourdais has qualified P7 for the 2015 Indianapolis 500 with a four-lap average speed of 225.193 mph.

For more information, visit www.misticecigs.com and www.HAUSvape.com. Follow on Twitter @MisticEcig and @HAUSpv, watch on YouTube, or like on Facebook at MisticElectronicCigarettes and HAUS.

 

E-Cigarette Industry Predicted to Save Medicaid Billions

20150331_EcigTable2A recent in-depth report by State Budget Solutions took a look at cigarette smoking costs vs. vaping, and the results show that not only will vaping save users’ health, but also their dollars.

“The game-changing potential for dramatic harm reduction by current smokers using e-cigs will flow directly into lower healthcare costs dealing with the morbidity and mortality stemming from smoking combustible cigarettes. These benefits will particularly impact the Medicaid system where the prevalence of cigarette smoking is twice that of the general public (51% versus 21%, respectively),” the story says.

A study on the impact of cigarette smoking on Medicaid spending looked at potential savings of the e-cig in Fiscal Year 2012, which could have been up to $48 billion. This is 87 percent higher than state cigarette tax and tobacco settlements.

The study broke down state-by-state savings and harm reduction benefits of quitting smoking. Currently, the study found that 11 percent of all Medicaid expenditures can be attributed to smoking. Smoking not only increases first- and second-hand health care costs, but also increases renovation costs in smoking-permitted areas and causes costly fires. The study predicts that the potential savings to Medicaid could significantly exceed state revenue raised from the cigarette excise tax and tobacco settlement payments by 87 percent.

For the full story, visit http://www.statebudgetsolutions.org/publications/detail/e-cigarettes-poised-to-save-medicaid-billions#ixzz3abLxEU6F.

Ontario Convention Center Readies for Vape Nights

unnamedThe entire Ontario Convention Center is booked for Halloween weekend’s Vape Nights, Oct. 30 and 31. Early bird registration is open, with the discount ending June 15.

Norm Bour of Vape Mentors will be heading educational seminars with guest speakers from all angles of the vape space. In addition, event coordinators are working on obtaining buyers not only from the United States, but from Canada, the United Kingdom, Japan, Korea and more.

Vape Nights will be setting up an area so that manufacturers, retailers, media/press can meet the ones who have helped our industry grow exponentially. The show coordinators are working on growing this list of “stars.”

To register, visit http://vapenights.com/exhibitors/.

Vaping the Coast Marks Largest Convention to Date in Gulf Coast

logo1aVaping the Coast will take place in Mobile, Ala. July 31-Aug. 2. The Mobile Convention Center will take center stage as Vaping the Coast L.L.C. takes over the building. They are suspending the indoor ban on vaping just for the event, and participants will be able to vape indoors for the entire event. Competitions, giveaways and more freebies will be on hand, but all of that pales in comparison to the industry experts and plethora of veterans and newbies alike who will be on site for everyone to teach and learn together. It gives networking opportunities to established industry professionals as well as those new to the vape community at large and provides a fun environment for fostering both business and personal relationships. Vaping the Coast L.L.C. is both business and pleasure for vaping enthusiasts and provides a wealth of knowledge for those that are unfamiliar with the latest breakthroughs in smoking cessation and harm reduction technologies.

Vaping the Coast will be the largest vape convention to date in Alabama and the Gulf Coast. The exhibit is more than 100,000 sq. ft. with more than 300 vendors expected to exhibit their product. Be part of Vaping the Coast by filling out the registration form.

For more information, visit http://vapethesouth.com/.

Free-to-Download Interview with Vice President of AIDUCE Available

415259-440x305As the e-cigarette industry adapts and develops, it is more important than ever to stay on top of the European landscape, and look to both internal and external changes affecting your business.

In this in-depth E-Cig Global interview, Alan Depauw, AIDUCE vice president, provides his insights on the consumer market landscape for electronic cigarettes in France. AIDUCE is the Franco-Belgian vapers’ association.

Depauw discusses the impact of future regulatory changes, online trends and buyer behavior in the French market, and he also shares his perspectives on the main market opportunities and threats that will face key vendors in the market.

Download the free interview transcript here: http://bit.ly/1DYYUF6.

Alternatively, email enquire@iqpc.co.uk for a copy.