Is The FDA Protecting Special Interest?

The FDA estimates that close to 100,000 e-cigarettes have been sold in the United States, despite the organizations attempt to bar the products' entries into the country via U.S. Customs. Organizations such as the American Legacy Foundation are also bent on pulling the products off the market for illogical and outrageous reasons, including the accusation that the products are being marketed toward children due to the fact that the cartridges are available in many flavors.

The accusations that the products are being marketed toward minors is completely baseless considering the fact that most e-cigarette sales are made online and it is rare for websites to accept checks or money orders as forms of payment these days. PayPal requires that a user be 18 to create an account and to become verified, they must have a bank account tied to it. So, two hurdles that require a person be 18 would have to be overtaken by children who have much easier access to tobacco cigarettes.

Another misconception that organizations like the American Legacy Foundation have is that adults do not have tastebuds. Most adults will tell you that they like fruit flavors just as much as children do, so the “flavors = intended for children” argument loses validity there.

Some organizations are convinced that it could draw children into the habit of smoking, but e-cigarette kits run anywhere from $50 to $150, depending on the brand purchased. Tobacco cigarettes are only $5 a pack and it's more feasible for children to get their hands on grandpa's $5 smokes than Mom's $150 e-cigarette.

Then there is the supposed risk of nicotine poisoning. E-cigarette cartridges are no more likely to cause nicotine poisoning than tobacco cigarettes and it has been noted on numerous medical websites that children go to the emergency room all the time because they ate cigarettes or cigarette butts. Consumers are being warned by many e-cigarette manufacturers to keep cartridges out of the reach of children and pets, just like they are warned to keep cigarettes out of reach. There is no elevated risk of nicotine poisoning, either for the user or for children and pets.

Even concerns about inhaling nicotine have surfaced, even though nicotine has been inhaled in cigarettes for centuries and through inhalators that have been on the market since the 1990's. The safety of nicotine inhalers has not been questioned to the extent that e-cigarettes has.

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