By Justin Wiesehan, VP of Regulatory Affairs for Mistic E-Cigs.
Last year was a pivotal year because the Deeming Regulation from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) concerning vaping finally went into effect on August 8, 2016.
Many in our industry were relying on passage of the Cole-Bishop Amendment that would have changed the effective date of the rule (aka predicate date) to August 8, 2016. This meant that all products on the market prior to that date would be “grandfathered” and did not have to go through the FDA’s extensive premarket authorization process.
Companies like Mistic can continue to sell e-cigarettes, e-liquids, mods, personal vaporizers and other vapor products they sold prior to August 8, 2016
The outcome of the 2016 presidential election changed that and the 114th Congress decided it did not need to push a ton of bills in an appropriations package (that included the Cole-Bishop Amendment) during its lame duck session.
The vaping industry, however, is optimistic that the predicate date will change with the new administration and new Congress. That means that vape shops and companies like Mistic can continue to sell e-cigarettes, e-liquids, mods, personal vaporizers and other vapor products they sold prior to August 8, 2016. Regardless of the outcome, Mistic is fully complying with the FDA’s new regulations and already started the premarket authorization process for our products.
We also are hopeful that with the transition to new presidential leadership, more reasonable officials will join the FDA, in particular, President Trump’s choice of Jim O'Neill to spearhead the regulatory agency. Other promising cabinet picks include Rep. Tom Price to serve as Secretary of Health and Human Services, and Congressman Mick Mulvaney for the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, who is familiar with the FDA implementation of the Tobacco Control Act.
We also continue to work with the Vapor Technology Association and our own lobbyists to push for reasonable regulations of vapor products both at the federal and state levels. Our collective efforts are part of a broader coalition fighting for the grandfather date change and we are planning several meetings for 2017, as well as industry fly-ins to meet with members of the House and Senate.
Many indicators like the ones mentioned above point to a positive outlook for the vaping industry in 2017. Our focus always has been on our customers and we will continue to support efforts to keep our industry thriving, offering high-quality products that provide great value, exceptional taste and a brand promise of trust.