Following the Durbin report, released yesterday on electronic cigarettes being found to target youth, Phil Daman, Esq., president of SFATA (Smoke Free Alternatives Trade Association) made the following statement:
“Electronic cigarettes and vaporizing products are not for children. They should be available to consumers of legal age who choose to reduce or eliminate their tobacco consumption while enjoying a product that can simulate the smoking experience. As an industry, we recognize the need for age verification laws that forbid sales of vapor products such as electronic cigarettes to minors.
“We encourage responsible marketing directed to those over the age of 18. SFATA does not support, and our industry does not use, youth-oriented product marketing.
“The flavor options offered by many producers of vapor products are widely enjoyed by adult users. Flavors are very common, and increasingly popular, in many adult product categories, including coffee, liqueurs, and other forms of beverage alcohol.
“Regarding the idea that e-cigarettes and vapor products are a ‘gateway’ for combustible cigarette use, there is no evidence that use of e-cigarettes and vapor products may lead to or contribute to the use of combustible cigarettes, by teenagers or by anyone else. Vaporizing products like e-cigarettes are an alternative to tobacco products. The USC study cited by those concerned about a possible ‘gateway’ effect, in fact, shows simply that users of e-cigarettes are more likely to be smokers.
“In fact, the number of teenagers who smoke combustible cigarettes continues to decline, as documented by the CDC.
“Furthermore, Senator Durbin’s opinion that it is ‘common sense’ that the use of vaporizers leads to an increase in smoking cigarettes is misleading and harmful. While we respect Senator Durbin’s opinion, he is unable to cite any studies with direct evidence to support his position. While SFATA does not and will not make health or cessation claims, unlike Sen. Durbin, we cannot ignore the voices millions of vapers across this country who proclaim that these products have provided them with an alternative to smoking, not an entrance to start.
“Sen. Durbin ignores the voices of literally millions of people across the country who loudly say that these products have provided them with an alternative to smoking, not an entrance to start.”