For some time now, many have been worried about the impact of e-cigarettes on America’s youth. Their concern is that the products e-cigarette companies are offering appeal more to teenagers than they do to adults. It is for this very reason that San Francisco recently approved a ban on flavored e-cigarette liquids.
In June, it was announced that San Francisco residents had overwhelmingly – 70 percent – voted to uphold a ban on all flavored tobacco (menthol cigarettes and flavored e-cigarette liquids). Last summer, the city’s supervisors approved the measure. But tobacco giant R.J. Reynolds and a group of business and industry associations challenged it.
Now, experts say other cities may choose to pursue similar legislation. It shows that there is an ever-increasing scrutiny of how influential flavors are in attracting young people to use tobacco and nicotine products. For example, are flavors like brulee and mango really attractive to adults that are already used to tobacco flavor? Or are they more appealing to young people? Those who are skeptical have pointed to the popularity of the sleek cigarette Juul with American teenagers.
Bloomberg remarked in a statement that the recent vote marks “an important step forward” for public health in San Francisco. It also commented on how this vote shows it is possible to overcome the tobacco industry.
Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids President Matthew Myers also chimed in, saying, “San Francisco’s groundbreaking law stands – and will stop the tobacco industry from targeting kids, African Americans and other populations with menthol- and candy-flavored products, as the industry has done for far too long.”
“The San Francisco vote gives a powerful boost to growing efforts around the country to end the sale of flavored tobacco products,” he says.
The mounting criticism of e-cigarettes has definitely affected the merchants that offer these products. Finding payment processing services and business financing is a real challenge. Banks simply do not want to deal with the risks and scrutiny of the industry. As a result, businesses have turned to alternative provider for their merchant service needs. An e-cig merchant account, for example, is specifically tailored to meet e-cigarette merchants needs and allows them to offer customers multiple payment processing options.
Moving forward, opponents have asked that the FDA limit the use of flavors. The agency did agree in March that it would consider both the role they play in helping adults stop smoking and their impact on attracting teens to e-cigarettes. Some analysists, like Wells Fargo Bonnie Herzog, even believe that a future federal menthol ban is a possibility.
Author Bio:Electronic payments expert Blair Thomas co-founded eMerchantBroker, serving both traditional and high-risk merchants with services like an e-cig merchant account. His passions include producing music and traveling.