Federal regulations literally exist to help consumers, to look out for them, to be their watch dog. Specifically in tobacco and nicotine related products, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) is the top watch dog agency – it is a federal executive agency.
Here’s the state of affairs concerning tobacco and nicotine related products we’re facing in the United States: We have millions of Americans addicted to nicotine (namely tobacco cigarettes). We know that tobacco cigarettes are highly addictive (mostly due to nicotine) and are attributed to countless serious diseases. Essentially, we have a run-away train on our hands.
As people are increasingly becoming more health conscious in recent years (think non-gmo etc), cigarette use is going to decline over time. It’s in-fact a dying industry, however it’s incredibly powerful and has tentacles that reach every street in the world. Those who are aware of the blatant immorality attached to this systemic problem aren’t as accepting of the long term solution however.
We want to do good. We want to help long term tobacco cigarette smokers quit smoking. We want to be a bridge for someone who would on their present course most likely die of cigarette related disease, enable them to change their course, to not be another statistic.
In our opinion, the most successful bridge to a smoke free lifestyle is vapor products. By using vapor products, consumers can slowly and meticulously ween themselves from nicotine all-together.
We stand for proper federal regulations that enable consumer access to products that can help them quit smoking. We stand for regulations that deter young adults from falling into the nicotine trap and for regulations that don’t cripple a potentially vital bridge industry of a smoke free life.
Table of Contents
Tobacco cigarette regulations in the U.S has been laughable at best – which says a lot for the number 1 preventable killer in the nation. In 1996, the FDA issued the ‘FDA Rule’, which was a well intentioned attempted step to tame ‘big tobacco’, mostly directly from children. Shortly after, ‘big tobacco’ sued (see case FDA v. Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp), in which the court ruled that Congress had not given the FDA authority over tobacco. It took over a decade for Congress to actually provide authority to the FDA via the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2010. In full disclosure, the FDA’s oversight over tobacco products was extremely loosely covered via the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act of 1938. But again, it was even close to being properly equipped to deal with ‘big tobacco’ in any way, shape or form. In July 2017, the FDA announced a comprehensive plan for tobacco and nicotine regulation in an effort to actually regulate an out-of-control industry. (Source: Wikipedia)
Meaningful vapor product regulation in the U.S is going to evolve over time. We’re beginning to see much needed regulatory measures in the 4th quarter of 2018. It is troubling however, as researchers, to ever see vapor products associated with tobacco products. To be clear, there absolutely has to be a distinct understanding of the difference between vapor and tobacco products. Tobacco cigarettes contain roughly 7,000 ingredients and chemicals, including but obviously not limited to arsenic, acetone, ammonia and formaldehyde. Vapor products on the other hand on average less than 5, including vegetable glycerin, propylene glycol and flavors for taste. To be frank, vapor products don’t contain tobacco and should be regulated entirely on their own. It’s of course important to note that we indeed understand the important of regulating vapor products, it’s 100% needed. Proper vapor regulations will curb teen use (in an effort to eliminate), be tough on marketing and advertising vapor products in any sort of vulgar manner and generally protect consumers from unsafe products. We don’t back vapor products because we think they’re the greatest thing since sliced bread, we back them because they’re a phenomenal bridge for consumers to stop using actual toxic products such as tobacco cigarettes. (Source: Office of The Federal Register)
Honestly, we don’t have the time or patience to study the entire history of how Europe has or hasn’t regulated tobacco products. We will however, take you back to 2001, in which the TPD (Tobacco Product Directive) was established. The TPD was established to regulate aspects such as the manufacturing, sales and presentations of tobacco products. Essentially, the TPD was the equivalent of the U.S Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act of 1938. Which again, was basically a very hollow piece of legislation – having little effect on reigning in a run-away train of an industry. Similarly to the U.S, almost a decode later in 2009, following outcries of necessity for real regulation, the European Commission decided to review the TBD. This review was known as an IA (Impact Assessment) and culminated roughly 4 years later is what is widely regarded as the most lobbied dossier in the history of the EU institutions. Phillip Morris International employed roughly 160 lobbyist and €1.25 million on shaping the dossier. The end result was larger textual and pictorial product warning labels. Concerning the TPD and vapor products: the first draft wanted to require all purchases of such products to have a medicinal license. In the final draft however, vapor products only required medicinal licensing if said products claimed to have health benefits. The TPD has suppose to have been adopted by EU member nations since 2016 or face sanctions by the European Commission. (Source: European Respiratory Society)
Globally, the ‘big tobacco’ industry is worth hundreds of billions annually. For those of you who can’t grasp the fact that chemicals such as arsenic, ammonia and formaldehyde are inside tobacco cigarettes – wake up. In the end of the 3rd quarter 2018, a San Francisco, California jury ruling found Monsanto’s Round-Up (weed killer product) liable for a groundskeeper’s cancer – resulting in a $289 million in damages. Mostly as unsuspecting American’s and people of the industrialized world, we just assume that everyday products sold on the shelves of retailers around the world are completely safe. Most of us unfortunately believe that cancer causing herbicides found in home and garden products and poisons found in cigarettes would be filtered out of the market by someone, somewhere. We trust our governments to do the right things, take the right actions and to keep us safe. We subrogate common sense and logic in bulk. As a result, corruption and deceit runs wild in our societies. Again, we love going to the core of problems. However, this is a really big problem – it runs deep. If you’re so inclined, we encourage you to look into corporate law and or admiralty law – also up for consideration is the Georgia guide stones. For those that just want the meat and potatoes, large corporations have an incredible amount of power in our societies in some of the biggest industries in the world. Their battalions of lobbyists and lawyers overpower and take advantage of our legal systems for a living. From 2007 through 2017, big tobacco spent roughly $268.84 million on lobbying. (Source: Statista)
United States Tobacco Cigarette Regulations
The history and current status of regulations surrounding tobacco cigarettes is long and complicated. This is of course mostly due to the fact that tremendous efforts were and are undertaken to stifle regulation, essentially since the birth of commercialized cigarettes. Those efforts include but are not limited to heavy lobbying, legions of lawyers, composing false and misleading research / reports, and of course implementing an absolutely ton of money – all to achieve pre-determined and desired outcomes. While there are certainly state and local tobacco cigarette regulations to be aware of and to adhere to, our focus is primarily in identifying federal regulations.
Labeling & Warning Statements
Cigarette warning statements and or labels are not a new concept. In fact, the first major federal legislation addressing the ‘potential’ associated negative health effects of cigarettes was the FTC’s Federal Cigarette Labeling Advertising Act of 1966. In recent years, however, the FDA has essentially spearheaded all tobacco product regulation themselves. Which frankly, should result in a more efficient and effective method for rooting tobacco cigarettes out of the market.
Listing of Ingredients
All along, the battle between big tobacco and public health has been based around identifying the exact ingredients, chemicals, toxins and carcinogens found in tobacco cigarettes. Until relatively recently, big tobacco has done a masterful job at covering up and misleading research as it pertains to the content of cigarettes. This was mostly pillared by the idea of trade secrets and a very loose concept of free markets. After more than 60 years, the FDA is finally sinking their teeth into the contents and toxins created when cigarettes are combusted.
Maximum Amount of Nicotine
Now that the FDA is actually taking a pro-active role in regulating tobacco cigarettes, nicotine is of course in the spotlight. It’s important to note however, that nicotine in and of itself in tobacco cigarettes isn’t the primary factor related to health problems (or even close to it). Nicotine is however, an extremely addictive stimulant. Thus, the real problem that does in-fact need to be addressed is the extremely harmful chemicals/toxins ingested when smoking and how nicotine plays a role in addicting consumers to these deadly ‘ingredients’.
Tobacco Cigarette Enforcement of Laws
One of the most important aspects of regulating tobacco cigarettes is enforcing the regulations themselves. After-all, what’s the point in going to such great lengths to regulate an entire industry if the perpetrators in such an industry are not held accountable. The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) along with the CTP (Center for Tobacco Products) are in charge of tobacco product compliance, enforcement and training. While these federal agencies work almost entirely on a macroeconomic basis, actions taken by them provide a ripple effect (if not tsunami) throughout the entire industry.
U.S Tobacco Cigarette Labeling and Warning Statements
We are of the opinion that products like modern tobacco cigarettes shouldn’t be allowed to be sold anywhere. Never forget, when we talk about tobacco cigarettes, we’re talking about the number 1 source for death in America. We’re talking about consumers ingesting arsenic, acetone, acetic acid, ammonia, cadmium and formaldehyde to name just a few substances.
With that being said, this is our reality. Where in America (at least in modern history), with enough money, absolutely anything is possible. Therefore, if all were able to do for the time being is deter consumers from using such toxic products, we’ll certainly get behind every effort.
One of the most common efforts to deter consumers from using tobacco cigarettes in the United States is to mandate warning statements and or adverse health labels on all tobacco cigarette products.
Warning statement requirements have been tossed around since the mid 1960’s. You might have guessed that big tobacco has done everything in their power to negate such a policy and to essential hinder every aspect of it. Including but not limited to every single word stated, where it is placed on the product and how big it is.
The FDA is however, beginning to seriously implement health warning statements on tobacco products and advertising. The FDA set a hard deadline of August, 10th 2018 for the latest health warning statements to be implemented.
U.S Listing of Tobacco Cigarette Ingredients & HPHCs
Listing of Tobacco Cigarette Ingredients
Big tobacco has essentially been operating as a wild west type industry since it’s commercialized inception. Public health has absolutely never been a concern. The entire industry has operated on greed and putting profits entirely above people.
Every single measure has been taken over the years to stifle any sort of government regulation on the tobacco cigarette industry. Common sense was thrown out of the window from the get-go. Instead, regulating tobacco cigarettes has been a corporate circus. The sad results have been hundreds of billions of dollars in revenue and a half of a million deaths every single year.
The proverbial cat has been out of the bag for a long time however. As of the late 1990’s, public health concerns finally became too apparent for inaction. While progress has been made to ‘protect’ consumers, it’s an ongoing battle to this day.
Actions taken in recent years and even in 2018 are at least promising to public health as a whole. Tobacco cigarette use is in decline and will continue to be. It’s our hope that one day the circus music comes to a stop, the people will have representatives sitting in every chair and big tobacco will be left entirely out of the equation and or market.
The primary factor in the fall of big tobacco are the ingredients in cigarettes.
Listing of Tobacco Cigarette HPHCs
Most people have no idea of the chemicals produced when a tobacco cigarette is lit on fire (or combusted). The most common theme in public discourse relative to tobacco cigarettes is generalities. In other words, people know that cigarettes are bad and that’s it. Smokers feel rebellious, non-smokers find the smell of cigarette smoke appalling and life goes on.
There are approximately 600 ingredients in tobacco cigarettes. When a cigarette is burned, it creates over 7,000 chemicals, many of those chemicals are poisonous and are known to cause cancer.
For years, big tobacco was able to perpetuate the lie that second-hand smoke wasn’t harmful. The truth is, second-hand smoke is extremely dangerous. The next time you decide to smoke a cigarette, know that you’re not only harming your own health, you’re harming everyone around you.
The FDA has essentially labeled second-hand smoke and other non-apparent potentially adverse tobacco cigarette derived contents as HPHCs (Harmful and Potentially Harmful Constituents). This is separate from identifiable ingredients found in a tobacco cigarette itself. These are again, contents created during combustion and chemical reactions.
U.S Maximum Amount of Nicotine Allowed in Tobacco Cigarettes
Again, the primary reason that tobacco cigarettes are so addictive is nicotine. However, the primary reason that tobacco cigarettes are harmful to one’s health are the ingredient contents and chemicals, including those created during combustion (that happen to not derive from nicotine whatsoever).
With that being said, we’re not opposed to restrictions on the maximum amount of nicotine in tobacco cigarettes. Frankly, the reasons why we’re not entirely opposed to nicotine are two-fold. Nicotine in and of itself, in small quantities lacks evidence of direct negative health issues. Additionally, by isolating nicotine (vapor products), smokers are able to transition away from deadly tobacco cigarettes.
Against our greater judgement, it’s evident that tobacco cigarettes are going to be able to be legally sold in the United States for the foreseeable future. Therefore, we fully support and encourage the concept of restricting the amount of nicotine in them. For example, if nicotine wasn’t allowed in tobacco cigarettes, because tobacco cigarette are in-fact deadly, the number of cigarette smokers would nose-dive as would the number of directly related deaths.
Capping the amount of nicotine in cigarettes is one of those no-brainer ideas that will unfortunately take years to put into place. However, we remain hopeful that the FDA will act quicker than we expect and or forecast.
U.S Tobacco Cigarette Compliance & Enforcement Agencies
The Food and Drug Administration enforces tobacco associated federal regulations. Additionally, the FDA has created an entity known as the Center for Tobacco Products that works solely on tobacco related legislation, enforcement, compliance and training. The CTP was initially created to carry out the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009.
FDA by The Numbers
- The FDA has almost 18,000 full time employees.
- The FDA is responsible for overseeing more than $2.5 trillion in consumer products.
- The FDA’s budget for fiscal year 2018 is $5.4 billion, nearly half of which is paid by industry user fees (which is a great thing).
- The FDA oversees over 85,000 tobacco products (and counting).
The FDA and CTP are currently in a phenomenal position to do great things as it relates to eliminating tobacco cigarettes in our society.
In our opinion, very publicly slapping JUUL was necessary to help curb and eliminate underage vapor product consumption. It’s our hope however, that the FDA doesn’t negate the tremendous potential that vapor products have to help people quit smoking tobacco cigarettes.
United States Vapor Product Regulations
In our opinion, vapor products should be regulated entirely separately from tobacco products. However, that is not the case. Vapor products are legally seen as tobacco products and are thus regulated as tobacco products. To be fair however, vapor products are deemed tobacco products mostly from a categorical sense. Vapor products still essentially require separate regulation as they are indeed entirely different items. The basic outline of vapor product regulation includes but is not limited to nicotine, e liquid and devices. It is essential to regulate vapor products to ensure consumer safety, limit/eliminate underage usage and enable smokers to quit tobacco cigarette use.
Vapor Deemed Tobacco
Vapor product regulation was stewing as early as 2013. As vapor popularity, sales, satisfaction and innovation increased, it became even more apparent that vapor was here to stay. Vapor regulation was hyped up to a fever pitch throughout 2014 and 2015. In 2016, the FDA finalized a rule that extended CTP’s regulatory authority over vapor products. Specifically, vapor products were deemed tobacco products which were subsequently subject to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, as amended by the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act.
E Liquid Flavors
As vapor products increase in popularity and use, every aspect of them are going to be under the micro-scope. Specifically, e liquid flavors are one of the hottest topics surrounding the vapor industry. For those of you who don’t already know, there is an e liquid flavor for almost anything you can think of. The controversial yet fair discussion underway currently is whether or not e liquid flavors play a significant role in underage vapor use. The other side of the coin is of course, does that vast e liquid flavor selection play a significant role in helping adult tobacco cigarette users quit smoking.
Vapor Device Approval
Like any large scale consumer electronic product, vapor device safety/regulation is something we stand behind 100%. While most vapor device manufactures world-wide understand that safety mechanisms in their products are vital, an actual mandate and or legislation to enforce certain measures is properly prudent. The fact is, the vapor industry is booming and is going to continue to grow. Thus, it is of the utmost importance that safety mechanisms such as short circuit protections, battery cutoff, over-heating protections and over-discharge protections are in place for every device.
U.S Vapor Products Regulated as Tobacco Products
Perhaps the most media coverage (certainly online) that the vapor industry has seen thus far was in 2016, when essentially the first large scale vapor regulations officially went into effect. The headlines essentially everywhere read something like, ‘FDA Deeming Regulations Over Vapor Products’, for a few months span.
Honestly, at first we didn’t like the idea of vapor products being ‘deemed’ tobacco products, because essentially vapor is the antithesis of tobacco. However, upon much research and consideration, we understand why this is the case and still see an incredibly bright future for the vapor industry.
Again, vapor product regulation was an absolute necessity. With such a booming market, with millions of consumers using vapor products and almost a hundred thousand vapor products available, safety measures and precautions become absolutely necessary. (Including the importance of limiting / eliminating underage nicotine consumption.)
The Positive Effects of Regulating Vapor as Tobacco
- Limiting and or eliminating underage usage.
- Ensuring consumer safety concerning ingredients and components.
Potential Negative Effects of Regulating Vapor as Tobacco
- Potentially limiting vapor availability for current cigarette smokers.
- Potentially over-regulating a growing industry, limiting small business participation.
When you dig through the details of the related legislation, it is true that vapor products are legally considered tobacco products. This is however, mostly from a categorical or grouping sense, which is logical considering the notorious nicotine ingredient found in both (although e liquid is available without nicotine).
The Inevitable E Liquid Flavor Crackdown in the U.S.
Currently, there are no specific regulations on e liquid flavors. However, it’s our opinion that we’re going to see flavor related regulations in the near future.
Frankly, we think that it’s highly unlikely that actual ingredients or additives that create certain flavors will ever be banned. However, it’s likely that the marketing and labeling of certain types e liquids and or e liquid pods are regulated.
For example, we don’t see a ban on the flavor of grape or the graphical/textual marketing/labeling of grape. We do however for example, see a ban looming on a grape flavor being marketed as a candy (grape bubblegum – bubblicious as an example).
Essentially, what’s coming in terms of e liquid flavor regulation is entirely based around limited / eliminating underage vapor use. Which again, is something we are 100% behind. Again, we are devout free market capitalists. But, we understand how marketing and advertising plays a role in our society, especially among our youth.
The vast majority of legal vapor users will have absolutely no problem with an e liquid product named and marketing as tangerine pop rocks for example, not being available for purchase.
The bottom line is that vapor advocates and the vaping community need to come together and understand that certain measures are necessary in order to limit / eliminate underage use.
With all that being said, over-regulating e liquid would be a big mistake. For example, if we get to a point where consumers have to search for a menthol e liquid flavor on some sort of black market, e liquid regulations will need to be overhauled.
U.S Requires New Vapor Device Approval
Vapor devices are relatively simple electronic products. Essentially, the entire makeup of a vapor device is a battery, circuit board, heating element, charging port and e liquid reservoir. Nonetheless, certain safety mechanisms absolutely must be in place to prevent accidents that could possibly result in harm to consumers.
Example List of Vapor Device Safety Features:
- Short Circuit Protection
- Battery Cutt-Off
- Over-Heating Protection
- Over-Discharge Protection
Vapor device regulation is a prime example of common sense legislation put in place to protect consumers. Vapor devices must include fail safe measures to limit potential accidents as much as possible. Vapor device regulation is also a prime example of how in reality vapor products are regulated individually and separately from ‘tobacco products’.
In addition, while it’s important to implement industry wide safety measures, it’s equally important to not charge approval fees that are too expensive for small manufactures to innovate and enter the marketplace.
European Union Tobacco and Vapor Product Regulations
The European Union is essentially a giant unelected bureaucracy that determines regulations (among other legislative efforts) in a number of European countries. Among the regulatory efforts deriving from the EU are tobacco and vapor product regulations. In summary, the European Union regulates tobacco and vapor products largely the same as the United States. However, the EU tends to have more regulations than the U.S., certainly in general but specifically as it relates to tobacco and or vapor products. Bare in mind that ‘Brexit’ is a primary example of how some European country’s regulations could vastly change in the near future. Great Britain or the U.K for example would likely retain many of the same tobacco and vapor product regulations as are currently in effect, but it would indeed be for their elected officials to decide.
Tobacco Products Directive
The European Union’s Tobacco Products Directive is the mainstay legislative act for all countries subject to the E.U (or member states), concerning tobacco and vapor regulation. Established in early 2014, the often called TPD largely focuses on tobacco cigarettes and products of old. However, vapor product regulations are certainly not minimized. In Title 3, Article 20 of the TPD, you’ll find vapor product specific regulations.
Graphical & Textual Cigarette Warnings
The European Union takes tobacco product warning statements (placed directly on products) a step further than the United States. The EU requires not only textual statements on the adverse health effects of tobacco products, but also photographs, which are intentionally alarming. Additionally, it’s worth noting that as laid out in the TPD, vapor product warning statements are textual only (no photographs required – thus far).
E Liquid & Maximum Amount of Nicotine Content
The European Union has laid out extremely specific regulations in the Tobacco Products Directive regarding e liquid and nicotine. Unlike the United States, the European Union has gone to incredible lengths to regulate nearly every single aspect of e liquid. For example, e liquid can only be sold in 10 mL containers, e liquid reservoirs cannot exceed 2 mL of e liquid capacity and the e liquid to nicotine ratio cannot exceed 20 mg/mL.
EU Tobacco Products Directive
The European Union’s Tobacco Products Directive put forward in early 2014 is the most up-to-date reference concerning tobacco and vapor product regulation in EU member-states.
Tobacco cigarette regulations have remained largely the same as they have been in previous pieces of legislation, with minor tweaks here and there. Like the United States, the European Union’s outlook on tobacco cigarette regulation is largely to curb overall usage and specifically to limit or eliminate underage smoking.
Vapor product regulation as specifically laid out in Title 3 – Article 20 of the TPD, however, seems to target the growing industry in a much more aggressive manner. For example, rather than seeking to entirely focus on mitigating underage usage, the EU imposes strict standards industry wide. Which is essentially not giving much weight at all for the industries potential of helping tobacco cigarette smokers quit.
Much of what the Tobacco Products Directive does is to artificially shape the tobacco products market itself. This is due to significant ‘cross-border’ trade and the desire to control every aspect of an enormous industry.
Nevertheless, we’re encouraged to see even the European Union clamp down on tobacco cigarettes. Requiring alarming adverse health photographs on cigarettes is a bold move and one that should no doubt continue to dismantle a deadly product.
EU Graphical & Textual Tobacco Cigarette Health Warnings
Under the European Union’s Tobacco Products Directive, tobacco cigarette products are required to have an adverse health warning photograph, adverse health warning statement and cessation information. Again, the photograph, which is a visually implied warning is certainly significant, as the EU might very well be the only regulatory agency in the world that requires this.
EU’s Required Warning Labels for Tobacco Cigarettes:
- 1. Photograph Warning
- 2. 2 Text Warnings
- 3. Cessation Information
Required Textual Warning Information:
- Tobacco smoke contains over 70 substances known to cause cancer.
Required General Textual Warning Statement Options:
- 1. Smoking Kills – Quit Now
- 2. Smoking Kills
Frankly, we’re actually in favor of using alarming warning photographs on tobacco cigarette products. After all, tobacco cigarettes are directly responsible for over 480,000 deaths per year in the United States alone.
Additionally, the TPD goes into great detail about every aspect of these 3 required warnings including font type, font size, font color, exact placements and percentage of overall product surface area to be covered by each.
EU E Liquid & Maximum Amount of Nicotine Content
The European Union’s Tobacco Products Directive has extremely strict e liquid regulations. In addition to maximum amounts of total e liquid and nicotine (which are tiny), the TBD requires that no additives not listed in Article 7(6) be added and that only high purity ingredients are used in the manufacturing process.
Mandatory E Liquid & Nicotine Amount Regulations:
- Maximum of 10 mL containers.
- Maximum of 2 mL reservoirs or tanks.
- Maximum of 20 mg/mL nicotine ratio.
While we can certainly get behind only high purity ingredients and a ban on extraneous additives, the idea of limiting containers to 10 mL, reservoirs to 2 mL or less and a maximum amount of 20 mg/mL nicotine or less is flat out crossing the line.
Limiting e liquid containers to 10 mL serves absolutely no purpose other than to inconvenience the consumer.
Similarly, limiting e liquid reservoirs or tanks to a maximum of 2 mL serves absolutely no purpose other than to inconvenience the consumer.
Lastly, a maximum amount of 20 mg/mL of nicotine in e liquid does more harm than good. For example, most longtime heavy smokers are likely to not be satisfied by this small amount, resulting in them continuing to smoke tobacco cigarettes.
Political and Financial Influences Surrounding Tobacco and Nicotine Regulation
Over the past almost 70 years, tobacco cigarette regulation or the lack thereof, has been completely shaped around political and financial influences. For those who thought that public health is and has always been put before financial and political interests, you’ve been mislead. The sad truth is that cigarettes are a toxic and deadly product. Huge amounts of money have been spent over decades to mislead, sabotage and defraud any logical regulation on the industry. With all that being said, it’s our opinion that the reign of evil and greed at this incredibly high level is coming to an end, albeit slowly. The people are waking up and beginning to think for themselves.
Big Tobacco Lobbyists
Over $20 million was spent by big tobacco to lobby their deadly products in fiscal year 2017. Keep in mind, that these are the actual reported numbers, logic leads us to believe that at least tens of millions more are spent in what is known as dark money (bribes, illegal kickbacks etc.). For example sake, almost $32 million of recorded lobbying money was spent by big tobacco in fiscal year 2008.
Big Government Taxes & Fees
Unfortunately, the catastrophe that is tobacco cigarettes and the nearly 500,000 American lives lost yearly to this deadly product, does not lie solely at the feet of big tobacco. Rather it’s a systemic problem, and our own federal and state governments are just as responsible as big tobacco. If governmental bodies weren’t complacent, cigarettes would’ve been banned as early as the 1960’s. The reality is, tobacco cigarette regulation has been a circus for decades.
Big Tobacco Lobbyists
While certain legislation has made progress in ridding the United States of a direct and devastating public health threat, the fact remains that this deadly product continues to be sold across our country. On average, 1,300 people die every single day as a result.
Significant Tobacco Cigarette Cases & Legislations:
- The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act
- Tobacco Settlement Master Agreement
- United States v. Philip Morris
- The Public Health Cigarette Smoking Act
- The Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act
- The Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act
Furthermore, the role of big tobacco lobbying doesn’t end at paying for certain end outcomes. Instead, big tobacco lobbying is equally identified as shaping every detail of any potential final legislation.
Lobbying and special interests groups have played more of a role in the shaping of modern America than anyone will ever know. As corruption around the world is continued to be exposed, it’s our hope that eventually it’s effects are cancelled out by accountability and real representation of the people.
Big Government Taxes & Fees
The inability in protecting public health to such a magnificent degree, governmentally implicates our entire judicial, legislative and executive branches of government.
With all of that being said, tobacco cigarette use and thus sales are and have been on a steady decline for a number of years. In our opinion, the FDA seems to be on the right track in terms of holding the tobacco industry accountable (finally).
One of the hardest pills to swallow regarding tobacco cigarette regulation is understanding that essentially state’s view the industry first as a revenue source and secondly as a public health concern.
Our only hope is that more is done to take the estimated 40 million cigarette smokers and enable them to quit smoking in a timely fashion rather than a really slow ten to twenty year process.
Conclusion: Tobacco Cigarettes Need Regulated Out of The Market & Vapor Needs Regulated Into the Market
In today’s fast paced second by second news/information cycle, it’s so easy to lose site of fundamental ideas. In almost every case in life, the best answer is also the most simple.
Tobacco cigarettes are directly responsible for the deaths of millions of people all over the world. Before, we get into the weeds (details) of how to regulate, contain and or profit from them, let’s ask ourselves one basic question. Should tobacco cigarettes be allowed to be created in the first place?
The tobacco cigarette industry is falling and is going to eventually crumble over time. Our opinion is however, that this cancer on our society needs to be eradicated immediately. Smoking tobacco cigarettes needs to quickly become a past tense subject for our society as a whole.
The best and most effective resource to make that happen is technology. Specifically, by utilizing vapor products, current cigarette smokers have a relative bridge to transition into. By transitioning to vapor products, tobacco cigarette smokers of past will be reducing their chance of serious illness.
Make no mistake, the answer to the tobacco cigarette epidemic is here. It’s incredibly important that vapor products are not over-regulated to a degree that would stifle current tobacco cigarette smokers from making the transition.