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Vaping industry seeks to block New York ban on e-cig flavors

September 26, 2019 07:09 PM

The ban on flavored e-cigarette products will take effect a week from Friday in New York. On Thursday, the list was expanded to include menthol-flavored products as well.

Earlier this week the Vapor Technology Association filed a lawsuit against several state agencies and Governor Andrew Cuomo. They're looking to block the ban.

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Vaping advocates said this ban will do nothing but force former smokers to make a choice: either buy unregulated vape products on the black market or go back to smoking cigarettes.

"I had a customer this morning and actually say, 'Do I buy a new mod today because mine just broke or do I go on buy a pack of Marlboro reds?' So yes, that does happen," Vape Expert at Smoker's Choice Damon Barrett said.

Barrett works at the Smoker's Choice location in Latham. He said he's noticing changes in buying patterns as the ban on flavored e-cigarette products approaches.

"Our regulars buy, they usually buy a bottle or two at a time. We've been seeing them buy about five, six bottles each transaction," Barrett said.

The lawsuit filed by the Washington, D.C. based trade association argues the Emergency Rule crosses the line from "administrative rule-making to legislative policy-making."

The executive action was taken earlier this month after hundreds became sick or were even killed by vaping related illnesses. The latest count is 805 confirmed cases in 46 states and 11 deaths nationwide.

Executive Director of VTA Tony Abboud said Vitamin E Acetate has been identified as the principal ingredient causing these illnesses. Abboud said this ban won't address those getting sick, because that ingredient is not found in the flavor liquids sold in traditional vape shops.

"They're black market products and they're THC products. Those are not products that are sold in vape shops and most importantly, by comparison our nicotine containing products are regulated by the FDA," Abboud said.

It's still unclear what the long-term effects are, but Abboud said even the American Cancer Society is recommending vaping over traditional cigarette smoking.

"We know enough today to say that we need to remain focused on ending combustible smoking," Abboud said.

In response to the lawsuit the governor's office sent this statement to NewsChannel 13, "Our children's future is at stake. Bring it on."

VTA has said they don't believe this measure will reduce teen vaping rates. They hope to have a hearing scheduled soon.

Credits

Emily Burkhard

Copyright 2019 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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