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Federal Government Now Regulating Vaping Industry
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Summary: The federal government will now regulate the e-cigarette industry as harshly as it regulates big tobacco.

Dora the Explorer might think vaping is cool, but the federal government sure doesn’t seem to agree. The Chicago Tribune reported that today the Federal Government released new rules that may upend the multibillion e-cigarette industry, which had positioned itself as an alternative to smoking. However, it appears that the government is going to regulate the vaping industry as heavily as they do its cigarette counterpart.

  
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The Food and Drug Administration issued rules for hundreds of e-cigarette brands that they will have to follow if they want to stay on the market. These rules are the first time that the new industry has had to face federal oversight.

Changes include limiting sales to minors and requiring new health warnings. E-cigarettes launched since 2007 must also ask permission before marketing their products, similar to the advertising restrictions placed on tobacco. Companies that do not submit marketing applications risk having their products removed from stores.

According to the Chicago Tribune, “E-cigarettes are battery-powered devices that turn nicotine into an inhalable liquid vapor. Though nicotine can be addictive, e-cigarettes lack the chemicals and tars of burning tobacco.” Currently, there is no evidence that these devices are harmful.

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While public health officials and teenagers’ parents may be rejoicing the FDA’s decision, the vaping industry is dismayed. According to Gregory Conley, the president of the American Vaping Industry, thousands of businesses could close due to the time spent and costs of complying with the regulation. House Republicans have vowed to push back against the new rules, and the Chicago Tribune writes the reason for this is the group’s close relationship with the tobacco industry, which has already given millions to Congress members this election cycle.

According to Wells Fargo, e-cigarette sales totaled to $3.5 billion in 2015. Most e-cigarettes and accessories are sold in convenience stores, gas stations, vape stores, and online.



Source: The Chicago Tribune

Photo courtesy of Vape Magazine

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