Reaction: Proposed FDA e-cigarettes rules

Posted at 6:51 PM, May 12, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-12 20:56:34-04

Growing in popularity, e-cigarettes and vaping have swept across the country.

Some argue it's the best way for tobacco users to finally kick the habit for good, while others worry it's the new "cool thing" for teenagers to get their hands on.

As Six On Your Side has discovered, proposed federal regulations could have a negative effect on business owners and their customers.

A week ago, the announcement was made. It was something those in the vaping industry knew was coming.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration officials will require new health warnings on e-cigarette packages and ads and officially ban the sale of products to anyone under the age of 18.

Last week, Dr. Robert Califf, an FDA commissioner, said: "The rule will also allow the FDA to evaluate the ingredients of these additional tobacco products."  

Checking ID's is something that is already the "norm" in the Treasure Valley. That's not the part of the proposal vape shop owners are objecting to.

It's the fact that any hardware or e-liquid manufactured after 2007 would have to go through an application process.

For each part or specific e-flavor liquid, containing varying degrees of nicotine, paperwork would have to be filed.

The pre-market application doesn't guarantee approval and is estimated to cost $1 million per item.

"It would effectively hand the industry back over to big tobacco companies, they are the only ones who really can afford that," said Nick Richards, owner of two Matrix Vapor locations.

Vaping is driven by small business owners who literally live and breath the industry.

It's not welcome news for Richards who says the technology has come so far. He just opened up a second location on South Vista Avenue in Boise.

"Everyone agrees there needs to be some kind of regulation and some kind of oversight but it needs to be sensible," Richards said. "It's a huge step in the wrong direction... to demonize vaping when it could potentially save millions and millions of lives every year."

"Vaping is better for them, and they want to continue doing it. I don't think a lot of people will be satisfied with saying, 'Hey, vaping is no longer available... I'm going to go back to cigarettes," added Adam Payne, one of Richards' employees.

The discussion has been sparked and now only time will tell if amendments to the current proposal will stick.

There is currently an effort to push the "grandfathered in" product manufacture date to 2014.