In what I believe to be the first time this has ever happened in the vape industry, a local government is actually actively trying to protect the vape industry within their jurisdiction.
Village of Hartland, a suburb of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is home to the well-known e-juice manufacturing company, Johnson Creek Enterprises. Johnson Creek is currently in danger of being shut down due to the FDA regulations that were passed last year.
One of the requirements of the FDA’s deeming regulations is that all tobacco products must be submitted to the FDA with a pre-market tobacco application (PMTA). Since the deeming regulations classified vape products as tobacco, this means that all vape products need to go through the PMTA process, including individual mods, atomizers, and e-juices.
In Johnson Creek’s case, the issue here is e-juice. With e-juices, every variation is considered a different product in the eyes of the FDA.
Let’s take a bottle of Guilty Pleasure from High Class Vape Co. as an example (because that’s what I’m vaping on as I’m writing this). Guilty Pleasure in 15ml and 60ml are two different products. And each nicotine strength is also another product. If each bottle size comes in 0, 3, 6, and 12 mg of nicotine, that’s four different products in each size. Just one flavor in this example can be considered eight different products!
Johnson Creek makes more than 200 different e-liquids, many of which are rebranded for other e-juice companies.
Each PMTA is estimated to cost around $1 million dollars to complete, which would cost Johnson Creek at least $200 million dollars. That would put them out of business and would result in all 50 employees jobs to be lost.
According to Lake Country Now, in a hearing with the village board, Johnson Creek asked for support to keep their business open and the board voted to help.
This appears to be very realistic possibility. According to Linda Hansen of The Electronic Vaping Coalition of America, there are federal laws that allow local governments to interfere with federal laws when those laws negatively impact businesses within the local government.
This is such a smart way of protecting the vape industry. I hope more local governments follow suit.