A law that aims to reduce youth access to flavoured vape products has passed in Philadelphia
Philadelphia City Council now prohibits flavoured vape products from being sold in any stores where minors have access.
This means that only tobacco flavoured e-liquids will be available on premises that don’t have an age restriction to enter.
Vape shops and other 18+ stores may still sell flavoured products so that adults who need them can continue to use them.
Cheryl Bettigole of Philadelphia’s Department of Public Health, said the agency wanted these alternatives available for adults.
But she added that it’s about “balancing” protecting kids and helping smokers.
“We’re really trying to balance protecting kids — which has to be our top priority here — with maintaining some access for chronic smokers, who may be using these products to try to quit smoking.”
Other products affected
The ban also restricts cartridges and pods with high nicotine concentrations.
The required nicotine limit is now 20mg which is the same as in the UK.
Flavoured tobacco products such as cigars and cigarillos have also been completely banned in-line with this new legislation.
Since this legislation was introduced, JUUL has stopped selling it’s desert and mint flavour pods.
Evidence suggests that teens in the US are more likely to take up vaping than those in the UK.
Link with lung illness
Though the CDC has recently found that many ‘vaping-related’ lung illnesses affecting young people were not the result of legal e-cigarettes, Bettigole says that restricting minors’ access to flavours is still important.
She believes that the lung-illness epidemic is “just a symptom of a broader problem: nicotine addiction.”
“Fortunately, it looks like the CDC has identified the specific culprit in this outbreak.
“But we have to recognize that as long as we have millions of our teens continuing to breathe in unknown substances, there will be another outbreak.
“That’s what we’re trying to prevent here in Philadelphia.”
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A US congressman has introduced a bill that would limit e-cigarette pods to 20mg of nicotine
Representative Raja Krishnamoorthi (Illinois) introduced the bill on Monday.
The bill is the ‘END ENDS Act’, which stands for ‘End Nicotine Dependence from Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems Act’.
It will also allow the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to lower the limit even further.
Krishnamoorthi believes this bill will make e-cigarettes “less addictive and appealing” to teenagers.
He hopes this will put an end to the ‘vaping epidemic’ among youngsters in the US.
This limit is in line with current regulation in the UK and European Union.
But it’s a different approach to many other US states which have focused primarily on flavours rather than nicotine content.
“As a concerned parent, I am committed to preventing a new generation of nicotine addicts.”
“Capping the concentration of nicotine in e-cigarettes is integral to ending the youth vaping epidemic by making these products less addictive, less appealing to youth, and less harmful to public health.”
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A congressional investigation into youth vaping has requested information from JUUL Labs, amid concerns that the vaping company has caused a ‘vaping epidemic.’
US Representative Raja Krishnamoorthi requested information from JUUL, including their marketing strategy, advertising campaigns and internal communications.
The representative said that he believes JUUL Labs are a “primary cause” of the youth vaping ‘epidemic,’ according to Bloomberg News.
The representative said in an email:
“The safety and well-being of America’s youth is not for sale, I am extremely concerned about reports that Juul’s high nicotine content is fueling addiction and that frequent Juul use is sending kids across the country into rehab.”
A JUUL Labs spokesperson said that the company will be cooperating with the investigation.
In another email, the spokesperson said:
“We share the subcommittee’s concerns about youth vaping and welcome the opportunity to share information about our aggressive, industry-leading actions to combat youth usage.”
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Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner cried on cue after her dialect coach took her vape away, according to X-Men: Dark Phoenix co-star, Jennifer Lawrence.
Lawrence made the comments during a cast interview on Jimmy Kimmel Live!
During the scene in question, Turner’s character Jean Grey accidentally kills Lawrence’s character, Raven/Mystique. However, Turner needed a little help in turning on the waterworks.
“I teared up a little bit watching Sophie in that scene.
“It was so honest and real, and it’s because she really was crying because her dialect coach, right before the take, took her Juul away…She started genuinely tearing up. It was like the performance of the year. It was amazing.”
“It is. It’s how to act.
“You take it away, and then you give it back, and that’s happy and sad.”
Turner’s vaping habit was revealed in May when the actor shared a photo taken during the filming of the final series of Game of Thrones.
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Health officials in the US have expressed concern that a ‘language gap’ has led to unreliable figures in the National Youth Tobacco Survey, which measures young Americans’ attitudes to tobacco and related products.
In past years, some teens taking part in the survey did not say “yes” when asked if they vape, even though they regularly used a Juul device. Researchers suggest that many teens believe that the device is distinct from other e-cigarettes and does not count as a conventional vape.
This year will be the first in the history of the survey that the poll will specifically mention Juul as an example of an e-cigarette.
The survey, conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), is usually conducted from March until May. Results will be available later this year.
It is hoped that this survey – and it’s updated language – will secure results from ‘Juuling’ teens to create a more accurate picture.
Brian King, deputy director for research translation in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Office of Smoking and Health, told Bloomberg:
“We suspect that we may see an increase as a result of the more precise language. Most kids are aware of Juul now that it has become a household name, but it has also become so ingrained in the culture that some of them may not know it’s an e-cigarette.”
A recent study published by the American Psychological Association found that inhaling pleasant aromas can decrease a smoker’s urge to light up.
The research published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology made no reference to the flavours used in e-liquid.
The researchers recruited 232 smokers aged between 18 and 55 who, at the time, were not attempting to quit with any form of nicotine replacement, including e-cigarettes.
The participants were asked to stop smoking eight hours before the study and to bring their preferred brand of cigarette with them.
First, the participants were asked to smell and rate a number of pleasant odours such as chocolate, peppermint and vanilla, as well as one unpleasant odour, tobacco from their favoured brand of cigarette and one odourless ‘blank’.
10 seconds later, the participants rated their urge to smoke on a scale of 1 to 100.
Finally, they opened a container containing the most pleasurable odour, the tobacco or the ‘blank’, sniffed it and then rated their urge to smoke. They continued to sniff for five minutes, rating their urge to smoke every 60 seconds.
All the participants reported a reduced urge to smoke after smelling each odour. However, the greatest reduction was found with the pleasant odours (19.3 points), compared to tobacco (11.7 percent) and the blank (11.2 points).
Lead author Michael Sayette, PhD, believes that pleasant odours distract people from their cravings as they are linked to ‘olfactory cues’.
The olfactory system links smells with memories, for example, cinnamon evoking pleasant memories of Christmas during childhood.
“Our research suggests that the use of pleasant odors [sic] shows promise for controlling nicotine cravings in individuals who are trying to quit smoking.”
Meanwhile, Sacramento City Council has approved a ban on the sale of flavoured e-liquids.
Local public heath advocates applauded the move, claiming that flavours lead underage users to smoke combustible cigarettes.
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