New rules from the FDA that go into effect today are set to make it a lot tougher for youngsters under 18 to get their hands on e-cigarettes and related paraphernalia. Among the regulations are rules that prohibit the sale of vapes in vending machines, the distribution of free customer samples from distributors and the sale of e-cigarettes to anyone under age.
Shop owners are now required to card anyone who looks younger than 27, a regulation it’s set to enforce by sending uncover agents into stores, as is already being done with alcohol and tobacco products. Also, much to the chagrin of many in the industry, companies that manufacture such products are set to undergo lengthy scientific review in order to gauge any health risks.
Manufacturers will be getting a window during the review process, with the FDA allowing them to continue sales for up to two years will they submit, with an additional year allowed for the process to be completed. American Vaping Association president Greg Conley has referred to the new regulation as “the beginning of a two-year countdown to FDA prohibition of 99.9%+ of vapor products on the market,” anticipating that it will “shrink to almost nothing” by the time August 2018 rolls around.
This new regulation comes on the heels of sweeping data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that note a strong uptick in e-cigarette usage among teenagers, corresponding with a downturn in teen tobacco usage.