It’s ‘Hard Out There’ for San Francisco Vapers – The Bans Sale of Flavored Vapor Products

Back in 2013, the British pop star, Lily Allen released a music video calledHard Out Here which was ambitious with a powerful feminist message. But what really catch the public’s attention is an e-cigarette featuring in her video. No matter she was intended to vocal in her support for vaping or not, this video soon had over sixty million views and reached number one on the UK Video Chart that month. Other celebrities who join the Vape party includes Bruno Mars, Jessica Alba, Leonardo DiCaprio, Paris Hilton. They’ve been making use of the vaping devices as an alternative to smoking and have regarded vaping as an effective tool in this quit smoking battle.


Flavored E-liquids & Vaping Lobbyists

As we know, reliance on smoking is not only a kind of nicotine addiction, there are other factors involved, such as the need to alleviate the pressure triggering smokers to reach for a cigarette. And when it comes to using the electronic cigarettes to help people give up smoking, E-liquid is the most important component.

The 60s, E-liquid manufactures were able to infuse the PG (propylene glycol) liquid with less nicotine to simulate the same smoking experience and delivered the nicotine enjoyment. Still, this smoking experience is simply a clone of traditional tobacco with a less “e-cig” characteristics. In the end, smokers returned to their original condition. One of the research conducted in 1984 shown that even with the nicotine e-liquid and nicotine patch that approved by the FDA, 75 percent of smokers light up again within a year.

In 90s, electronic cigarette industry started to research and develop the flavored E-liquid and menthol-liquid. They spent nearly half of the marketing costs in the manufacturing of these E-liquids and the vaping devices around them. The flavored E-liquids and menthol-liquid also carry a small amount of nicotine, but they taste like peppermint, mango, grape, cupcakes, even bubble gum. It works to simulate long-term smoker’s psychological attachment while gradually eliminate the actual tobacco smoking with their unique fascinating flavors that no other e-liquid can match. They make smokers suffer less in the whole process of quitting.

According to a new survey of the e-liquids, in an eight-page survey report, researchers in the United States have finally came to the conclusion that this new types E-liquid is an effective tool for smoking cessation. This research team comes from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, NY, including over twenty-hundred professors, surgeons, pulmonologists, patient, scientists. In this report, over eighty percent of doctors reported that they now advise their patients to use the flavored E-liquid for vaping therapy, a new smoking cessation method.

The medical research establishment are not the only party that pushing this trend. When the century–old tobacco moguls joined this vape club to compete for a slice of the action, producing a wide assortment of vaping devices and flavored E-liquids, many other individuals and organizations see the vaping as a weapon to combat smoking.

Thanks to the new types of E-liquids with healthy and joyful expressions, E-cigarettes has shed its early image of fuddy-duddy and appeal powerfully to the young smokers. “Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other social media are good ways to support these products,” Abrams Johnson said. He organized a free online support forum becomeanex.org, with over two hundred fifty-one thousand members.


San Francisco Bans Sale of Flavored Vapor Products

Despite all these support, restrictive laws for E-cigarettes are becoming reality. The US government has released several restrictions that are going to push thousands of e-cigs stores out of business. Apart from the heavier statewide taxes that have imposed on vaping industry from the Pennsylvania Legislation and other laws that reducing access to flavored E- liquids, this month, San Francisco Board of Supervisors, following in the footsteps, voted unanimously to approve legislation that will make  the city the first in the country to ban (not limit) the sale of flavored tobacco products as well as the menthol cigarettes.

This legislation is proposed by Malia Cohen. She was elected and re-elected to represent the residents of San Francisco’s 10th District for 4 years, including the Bayview Hunters Point, Dogpatch, Potrero Hill, and Visitacion.

“Today, San Francisco sent a clear message that we need to do more to protect the health of our most vulnerable,” Cohen said, “The tobacco industry’s bottom line can only be maintained by consistently cultivating new users.”

Cohen believed that flavored E- liquids,which aggressively market to a new generation of youth and minorities such as African American and the LGBT community.

“For too many years, the tobacco industry has selectively targeted our young adults with products that are associated with fruits and mint and candy,” said Cohen, whose grandmother smoked menthol cigarettes for much of his life and died of emphysema.

However, this is no doubt an emotional statement and a logical error obviously. Everybody knows that most of the time, Emphysema, as a form of chronic lung disease is mainly caused by long term Smoking habit, rather than the inhalations of menthol. This brings me to my biggest issue with the Cohen’s ban. Compared to the traditional tobacco, Flavored E-liquid has much less addictive component. That is the reason why it works to “help” quit smoking rather than “encourage” smoking.

“Flavored products are considered to be a starter product for future smokers.” Cohen said, “and this legislation will reduce the number of new tobacco users that pick up the habit each year.” She added.

Quite frankly, I was stunned. Seriously? A starter? Can you call condom a “starter” of the spread of AIDs? Or call seatbelt a “starter” of car accident just because they, to some degree, “encourage” the casual sex or careless driving.

This truly angered me. At a time when doctors are pushing to educate a way forward with using e-cig and flavored E-liquids for smoking cessation, few things that rebellious teenager are comfortable with, Cohen is saying that it’s okay to use this highly conjectural  statement to doom those who’ve already started smoking but intend to quite to so much sufferings that result to loss of life.

“Tobacco-related cancers lead all other cancer death rates in San Francisco, for both men and women,” Cohen continued. “This legislation will reduce the number of new tobacco users that pick up the habit each year.”

Could this legislation in the long run reduce new smokers? Maybe yes, maybe no. There is little evidence to proponent of this view. But one thing is for sure, vapers who get used flavor E-liquid may just give up on the course of smoking cessation. The Number of “future” smokers may be slightly trimmed, but the success rate of smoking cessation will decrease accordingly.

This legislation goes into effect at April 1st, 2018 and those who violate this could have their local tobacco sales permits suspended.

For most of vape shop independents, flavored E-liquid and menthol-liquid aren’t one hundred percent of our revenue, but they do a really good job grabbing the customers’ attention and bring customers through the door. When customers can still buy the flavored e-liquid in a neighboring city or certain online vape shops such as VaporFi, Ave40, VaporFi then delivered to their house in San Francisco. Local retailers can’t really survive in the severe competition.

When questioned about how the legislation will impact small businesses, Cohen said her government are trying to work with local owners to help them go through a “transition”. But she didn’t get into the real detail of this.

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