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June 26, 2019
In what is probably the most drastic action taken by any government entity, San Francisco will be the first city to officially ban the sale of E-Cigarette sales within city limits.
This is also the same city that is taking steps to implement safe injection sites for heroin users.
For a city that takes a strong when it comes to addiction issues, it does not make sense why they would take away one a tool that has helped countless smokers wean off cigarettes.
Although this ordinance does not ban vaping, it just states that if it needs FDA approval, it cannot be sold in San Francisco. Forcing ex-smokers who use vape as an alternative to help them quit their addiction to traditional cigarettes.
As of today, no vape manufacturer has submitted their product to the FDA for marketing approval.
The reason why?
The application is costly and there is skepticism that the FDA would approve. The Pre-Market Tobacco Application barely issued the guidance this year, three years after they announced the rule.
What doesn’t make sense is that the sale of traditional cigarettes is still permitted. Which is still the leading cause of preventable death in the United States at 480,000 deaths per year. Yet the alternative that has been attributed to getting off cigarettes is being forced out.
Ironically, the face of the vape industry, Juul is located in San Francisco. Juul Labs recently purchased a 28-story office building in the city. So even with the ban, they have no plans of relocating anytime soon.
The same cannot be said for smaller, independently owned vape shops who have 6 months after the mayor signs it to come up with a backup plan for their business.
But, Juul among other vape manufactures, are leading a ballot initiative to overturn this ban. If the initiative gets enough signatures, then this issue will be turned to the voters, and the ban could be lifted.
That is a hypothetical thought. What San Francisco officials have done is real. To take away E-cigs and leave traditional cigarettes almost negligent of public health. Is this a one-time experiment or a slippery slope that can spell doom for vapers?