Thankfully DeSantis, had listened to the concerns of local vapers and public health experts and rejected the bill. “While originally conceived as a bill to raise the legal age to buy tobacco to 21 (which is superfluous given this is already mandated by federal law), SB 810 effectively bans tobacco-free vaping flavors used by hundreds of thousands of Floridians as a reduced-risk alternative to cigarettes, which are more dangerous,” said Gov. DeSantis in his veto message.
While this move was commended by experts, recent data are now confirming that the Governor took the right decision. An article on Reason refers to a handful of renowned studies indicating that youth vaping rates are dropping, more smokers have quit via e-cigarettes than any other NRT. Moreover, a study from the Yale School of Public Health found that adult vapers who use flavours are ore likely to quit smoking than those who use tobacco flavours.
Flavour bans lead to increased smoking rates
On the other hand, another recent study published in JAMA Pediatrics, found that following San Francisco’s flavour ban, teenagers in the city’s high schools were more likely to take up smoking than teenagers in US school districts where no flavour bans were imposed. While prior to the ban, smoking rates in San Francisco were similar to that of many cities across the country.
“To understand this conceptually, think about youth preferences between tobacco products,” said study author Abigail Friedman, an assistant professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Yale School of Public Health, in a statement. “Among youths who vape, some likely prefer ENDS to combustible products because of the flavors.”
While testimony at the Massachusetts Department of Revenue’s Illegal Tobacco Task Force discussing the after effects of the local flavour ban, has concluded that the ban will lead to “an increase in smuggling activity and black-market sales.”
“I’m concerned that placing an added burden and tasking law enforcement with the enforcement of flavour bans will only stand to create a significant new black market, this includes both cross-state border smuggling and counterfeit tobacco,” said Charles Giblin, a retired special agent in charge of the New Jersey treasury’s office of criminal investigation.