The Current War on E-Cigs
I was at my local vape B&M the other day to stock up before heading out of town and was taken back a bit after speaking to the owner. I've been shopping there for over 7 months and during certain points the owner debated shutting down as business was not doing so well.
However, he just told me he's opening up not one but two more stores in the local area to meet the demands of the vaping community. The last few times I walked in I often had to wait as they are always extremely busy. They are always busy with a customer and sales have never been better. This is merely one example of an industry that has taken America by storm. The E-Cig industry is currently a 2 billion dollar industry that is highly unregulated and under taxed (when compared with tobacco and other sin products).
Although regulation is often seen as the big bad wolf, it's not always a horrible thing to have. As many of the e-juices and devices are often created without proper inspection and the E-Juice can have wildly inaccurate amounts of nicotine in each bottle depending on how diligent the E-Juice makers are in measuring the nicotine. There currently is no standard way of measuring out nicotine in E-Juice. Some stores have been known to “eye-ball” the nicotine and flavoring levels. Whereas some stores have a dedicated lab grade clean room and precise measuring tools.
There needs to be some standard and regulation that protects us the users and customers from people out to make a quick buck. Contamination is another huge issue as E-Juice making products needs to be cleaned like anything else, and it needs to be cleaned properly. Certain standards need to be maintained when creating these E-Juices. Now if a lab grade room is required to create E-Juice, this would cripple many stores as most stores are small startups that are creating E-Juice in the back of their break room (I'm dead serious…..). However, this may be a blessing as a clean room and lab grade equipment minimizes contamination and thus allows us to vape safer and higher quality E-Juice. With regulation hopefully the days of moonshining E-Juice in the back of a moving van would be over, a slight exaggeration maybe but not far from the truth!
Like any regulation, there needs to be a way to fund it and this is where big brother comes in. Granted with a soon to be 3 billion dollar industry, many politicians want to get their greedy hands on it for taxation purposes, but the 49% taxes they are proposing will cripple the industry and many of the small business owners that own these vape shops (even the good ones). Although I am not opposed to taxation, 49% is a bit excessive considering it'll be much more expensive to use E-Cigs vs regular cigarettes at that point (especially with how much E-Juice I go through a day). As of late there have been rumors of tobacco bonds defaulting and not being able to pay people back due to the rapid growth of the E-Cig industry.
At one corner we have Big Tobacco, a $90 industry and the E-Cig industry is poking a very angry bear, and at the other corner is Big Pharma, the Trillion Dollar Industry who have repeatedly been pushing for more and more regulation with E-Cigs and to claim that E-Cigs does not help with quitting and should not be advertised as such. There are doctors that still will not advice patients to use vaporizers to curb smoking sensation, but instead use Chantix instead. A known drug that has been linked to more than 500 suicides!!! Chantix is still being prescribed right now and have yet to be pulled from pharmacies. In response to these suicides, all Pfizer has done is put a warning label on the box.
Make no mistake, war is coming to the E-Cig industry.
This isn't something you just see in the news this is something we’re seeing right now! I am seeing more and more people use E-Cigs. At the bar, at the clubs, even right outside family restaurants many people are abandoning cigarettes for E-Cigs. I was at a wedding the last weekend and the E-Cig users outnumbered the smokers 3 to 1. This growth is not in just the major cities it is happening in the small and large ones. Many people are seeing health improvements and even doctors are seeing improved cardiovascular and respiratory improvements for their patients. So with this in mind fight for your right to vape. Write to your politicians, show up to rallies, to everything possible to make it more difficult for Big Pharma and Big Tobacco to get their way. Make our voices be heard amongst the outcries of controversy, our community is growing day by day as more people are converting and we will not be a force to be reckoned with.