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Indiana vaping laws

By Jeff Terrill

Fort Wayne Reader

2016-06-30


Changes are coming to the vaping industry. Many of today’s vapers are yesterday’s tobacco smokers. A vaper (one who vapes) inhales the vapor through an e-cigarette or through a vape pen or pipe.

Apparently, a Chinese pharmacist created the idea several years ago. When the liquids that are used in e-cigarettes or vape pens are heated, a vapor is created that is then inhaled. These e-liquid companies offer thousands of flavors such as Sour Applicious, Mothers Milk, Yellow Submarine, Blue Razzle Berry and Dewberry Cream.

According to the FDA, in 2014 3.7% of U.S. adults were regular users of e-cigarettes and vaporizers. In 2015, three million high school and middle school kids vaped. Apparently, over 80% of those young users indicated they used because of the easy access to appealing flavors. Accordingly, just this year the FDA prohibited the sale of all “modified risk tobacco products” to anyone under the age of eighteen.

Maybe you’ve seen vape shops popping up in strip malls near you. Or maybe you’ve seen billboard advertisements promoting vape juice flavors. E-cigarettes, vaporizers and e-liquids comprise a multi-billion dollar market that continues to grow. More and more ex-smokers, teenagers and adults take to e-liquids each year.

Proponents of the e-liquids assert that vaping is a safer and healthier alternative to smoking. Additionally, they contend that vaporizers and e-cigs enable smokers to kick the habit. E-liquids can vary from containing high levels of nicotine all the way to zero nicotine.

Opponents question the unknown health risks and addictiveness that vaping poses to adults and children. Marketing efforts and the variety of fruity flavors appeal to kids. Some lawmakers want more regulation. What teenager wouldn’t at least be curious about trying some Twisted Grape or Candy Crash?

From what I can understand, e-cigs and vaporizers function similarly but they look a bit different. E-cigs look like traditional cigarettes but are actually made of plastic, glass or metal. Vaporizers can look more like pens and pipes. Many Vape shops don’t even sell the e-cigs. Also, vaporizers allow the user a greater variety of flavors and nicotine levels.

Now, here’s where Indiana law is changing effective July 1, 2016. All e-liquid sold in Indiana thereafter must come from a manufacturer that is certified. Indiana lawmakers designated one Indiana company as the gate-keeper for all things e-liquid certified. And that company unilaterally elected to certify only six e-liquid companies, according to a June 25, 2016 IBJ editorial. Many of the major producers of e-liquids will be precluded from selling their products within Indiana. Consequently, Indiana vapers can expect to pay more for their e-liquid refills and, likely, enjoy far fewer product choices.

I don’t vape but I’m interested to see if the well-intended legislation ends up creating more problems than it fixes.

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Jeff Terrill is a partner/shareholder with the law firm of Arnold Terrill Anzini, P.C. Mr. Terrill represents clients accused of crimes throughout northeast Indiana. You can contact Mr. Terrill with any questions or comments at his office at 260.420.7777 or via email at jterrill@fortwaynedefense.com. Learn more about his firm at www.fortwaynedefense.com. This article expressed opinions and observations of the author, is not intended as legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship between the author and the reader. Please consult a qualified attorney with any legal questions or issues you might have. Thank you

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