← Back

Are You a “Tobacco Product”?

Image for Are You a “Tobacco Product”?

The FDA, as part of the latest bill on e-cigarettes and e-liquids, has changed the definition of a tobacco product and raised some rather bizarre questions about how far this definition could be stretched.

liquides e-cigarette | electric tobacconist US

The Traditional Tobacco Product

Prior to August 8, items labelled as tobacco products made logical sense: cigarettes, cigars and chewing tobacco being a few examples. Anything that was created from something of the genus Nicotiana was branded a tobacco product, because of the associated health risks that tobacco poses by affecting the heart, liver and lungs. There are over 4000 chemicals in tobacco smoke, of which at least 250 are known to be harmful and more than 50 are known to cause cancer. This meant that there was due care over the harmful nature of tobacco and regulations that were needed on the market.

Nicotine as a Tobacco Product

In most major brands (including but not exclusive to VUSE, blu or JUUL), nicotine in E-liquids is still extracted from tobacco, before being mixed with flavorings to produce the e-juices on sale today. Nicotine, however, is isolated from the other 4000+ other harmful chemicals. Nicotine in its current form makes sense to be classified under the label of “tobacco product” (being a product of tobacco), but whether or not nicotine poses harm to the body is still open for debate. After all, the main cause of its stigma is because it is addictive, so when combined with tobacco, it means that smokers become addicted to smoking tobacco, bringing about the continued exposure to the other harmful products that this entails.

But is an Addictive Substance Necessarily a Bad Thing?

The knee-jerk reaction to this question is, quite simply, yes. Anything that causes your mind to want it more is most often considered a negative thing. When you consider some other addictions, like sugarcaffeine and even working out<, it begins to raise the question that perhaps the substance is not fundamentally bad. Everything in small doses, after all, can have positive effects. There have been countless studies into the effects of nicotine that report that improved attention and memory can result from small doses of nicotine. On the other hand, we need water to survive and it has countless health benefits, but too much water and you’ll drown your body, your cells will burst and you will die. Where can we draw the line? The latest regulations have included vaporizers, vape pens, hookah pens, electronic cigarettes (e-cigs), e-pipes, and all other ENDS (electronic nicotine delivery services). This is where the question over the definition of a tobacco product has arisen. Many of the nicotine free e-juices are now branded a tobacco product because of their association with nicotine, and even the batteries that provide power to atomisers that come with all the big brands (VUSE, blu) are now called a tobacco product.

A Line in the Vape

Consider this. A regular candle lighter, used to light a cigarette, provides the energy the cigarette needs to combust. Is this considered a tobacco product? The human hands have the ability to pick up and light a cigarette. Are they tobacco products? If you make the decision yourself to go to the store and buy cigarettes, and the store provides you with the ability to purchase the cigarettes, are you and the store tobacco products? If you are thinking that these points are absurd, this is exactly the absurdity to which a battery or nicotine-free e-juice can be considered a tobacco product. It is simply nonsensical. I do not disagree that nicotine should be branded a tobacco product, given its main extraction from tobacco plants. However, in the future, when nicotine synthesis becomes cheaper and more readily available as it is starting to be in cases like the creation of nic pouches, even this will deserve to be considered for reclassification.

The Electric Tobacconist stocks e-liquid of varying nicotine levels, including nicotine-free, as well as all your favorite e-cigs from the likes of VUSE, VUSE Pods, JUUL and blu. Spend over $150 with us on any eligible order and get FREE shipping. Please note, Heated Tobacco and nic pouch products such as Zyn and Velo are currently only available for sale from our UK store and cannot be shipped to the US.