If you’re a vaper living in California, you’ve probably already noticed flavored e-liquids have almost disappeared. No, it’s not the high demand, but the result of the state’s Deputy Attorney General’s decision to ban all e-cigarette flavors except tobacco and menthol.
As if electronic cigarettes hadn’t taken enough flak already, California’s Deputy Attorney General, Jeanne Finnberg, has decided to start her own crusade against them. Although there is apparently no legislation to back up her actions, Finnberg took it upon herself to notify e-liquid vendors they had 90 days to stop selling flavored e-liquid or face serious legal consequences. According to California Health and Safety Code 119405, the sale of electronic cigarettes and their components to minors is strictly forbidden, but the act makes no mention of any prohibited e-liquid flavors. This hasn’t stopped the Deputy Attorney General and her enforcers from using the above code as justification for her decision to ban flavored e-cigarette juice.
As you’d expect, Jeanne Finnberg’s actions did not go unnoticed, and concerned vapers started questioning the legality of her campaign against e-cig flavors. She actually responded to one of the commentators, invoking the health and safety of the state’s minors as justification for her decision:
I am responding to your comment or question you posted online on the website of the Attorney General of California. You asked what laws California is enforcing by asking various electronic cigarette companies to stop selling flavored electronic cigarette products. The answer is that Ca Health & Safety Code prohibits the sales of electronic cigarettes to minors. We believe that flavored electronic cigarette products (other than tobacco or menthol) are designed to appeal to youth and are likely used as marketing devices to increase sales to minors in violation of the statute. We do not believe that the actions by the office to discourage the use and promotion of child-like flavors are arbitrary. Rather we believe that we are protecting the public health and safety of our young residents.
I hope that this answers your question.
Sincerely yours, Jeanne Finberg
Nicely formulated answer, I must say, but it actually doesn’t clarify the situation at all. The fact that they “believe” flavored electronic cigarette products appeal to kids doesn’t justify this kind of a ban. I’m pretty sure sport cars appeal to most kids as well, but I didn’t hear anything about the state banning them. Instead they just don’t allow minors to buy or drive them. Why should adult vapers have to give up their favorite flavors just because they appeal to children? Unless they know the details of their parents’ credit cards they couldn’t buy e-cigarettes online, even if they did lie about they age to access e-cig websites. And there is already legislation against vendors who sell this stuff to kids, so the flavored e-liquid ban really makes no sense to me.
Although anyone is free to draw whatever conclusions they like between flavored e-liquids and marketing to minors, the fact remains there is currently no legislation prohibiting vendors from selling e-cigarette juice of any flavor to age-verified residents of California.
It remains to be seen if the current ban on flavors will be enforced further, but a lot of vendors and vapers have already been affected by the recent decision.
via V2 Cigs Blog