Vapers are easy going people. They are people with a flair for life and love a bit of adventure. They are after all thought of by some as the hipsters of the “smoking” fraternity, derogatory connotations aside it’s not a bad title to hold. With this sense of freedom and carefree-ness the word regulation draws a certain amount of fear and anxiety in their minds. Very little is yet known about the side effects of vaping, harmful or otherwise so great fear rules the legislator. There are studies in favour of vaping as a route to curb smoking and its harmful carcinogenic chemicals but it has yet to sway a majority of people over. Therefore many States in the US and in Europe have begun drafting and implementing anti-vaping regulations with a bit more vigour.
E-cigarette regulations to date have operated on the more cautionary side of things but have begun to become overly cautious and thereby threaten the mere existence of the vaping community. An unfortunate consequence of over regulation is that people will fight back and find ways of circumventing the system. Is this ideal? No. But vapers are also territorial of their community and will protect it from G-Men as best as they can! Over regulation of the vape industry will leave the FDA with a cloud of smoke in their face as it will definitely backfire. Indications are that with the recent clamp down on the vape industry DIY advocates have sprouted all over the wide web in response and to offer assistance to their fellow vapers.
Many vapers have often bought readymade vape kits and e-liquids in aid of convenience but if this is no longer an option DIY-ers are on standby to supply and educate them and continue vaping on the sly. Modders have sites and YouTube channels were they freely publish how to tips and where to get stuff. Most of the regulations are centred on age thresholds and how retailers sell vape gear making the internet a back door pass that many are now using to get around this.
The clamp down on e-cigarette regulations has been to aid health and safety concerns. A fair premise as more research is done to put the vape community in the clear as a healthier and more effective nicotine replacement therapy. However this has led to further red-tape regulations and fees resulting in tens of millions of dollars being stripped away from the vape industry and into these companies tasked with doing pre-market review processes for product already in the marketplace. A crippling factor that has hit the vape industry quite hard.
You cannot keep a keen vaper down. A quick test revealed that it was cheap and easy to get all you need to make e-liquids that could last for six months off of the Internet. And for those vapers that aren't proficient in DIY there are people also waiting to help on the black market. This is going to lead grave problems in the long run and may actually undo and worsen things more than when there was no regulation. The FDA may have inadvertently created a creature -one eager to survive and unwilling to be snuffed out.
Nicotine is usually sold in a diluted form and it's the expensive component to most DIY e-juices. DIY vapers will be able to acquire some nicotine and other ingredients easier over websites like Craigslist, Vapetelligent or even Amazon and make their own juices. They can also find atomisers, cartos, drip tips, etc on the internet.
The biggest worry is about the unchecked use sale and use of nicotine. Nicotine in a less regulated society is sold safely and diluted. Retailers will make sure that the nicotine they purchase is of good quality and they will educate their consumers on the proper use thereof. A huge problem of the black market sprouting is that a lot of the nicotine being sold may not be safe and especially for first time DIY-ers a direct route to illness or even death. Unregulated nicotine will potentially be dangerous to the users as its strength may not be properly or correctly disclosed. Then all that money that’s been saved on health and safety just gets redirected to those black market vapers that the FDA has bred with over regulation.
An important thing to note is that nicotine can be highly dangerous when ingested. It needs to be diluted to a certain extent to make it safe. Mid-level strength nicotine could make someone sick or a stronger dose could kill them. so not everyone is equipped to make their own vape juice or should they be. But with regulations stifling retailers more and more vapers will resort to DIY juices and could potentially harm themselves in the process. The States will be left with a huge burden to look after the resultant sick and the low productivity that will also follow. By trying to quash one problem that is not endemic they have created another one- the black market.
If the noose is loosened on e-cigarette regulations there could be a way to safeguard the public from themselves and to undercut a clearly dangerous black market. Regulations should be premised on genuine and true concerns. Unfounded fears and the desire to kill the vape industry should not be factors that come into to play at all when regulations are considered and made. the more these conditions stifle the vaping community the more likely we will have a serious condition on our hands were the state just shifts health care resources from tobacco related illnesses to black market vaping related issues. A looser grip will benefit all parties concerned in the long run.
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