This week, Business Wire reported that the American E-Liquid Manufacturing Standards Association (AEMSA) and the Canadian Vaping Association (CVA) announced a combined effort to revamp vape e-liquid regulatory standards and practices. They dubbed the joint venture the North American Vapor Alliance (NAVA). AEMSA President Scott Eley and CVA President Shaun Casey formed the ad-hoc alliance after “strong industry input” asking for clearer, more refined regulation for vape products.
Breaking Off From Tobacco
The two presidents recognize the importance of legally distinguishing vape products from tobacco. The separation “is essential to get effective regulations for the industry,” Eley noted.
“The key is to get the regulation right so that electronic vapor products meet mandatory professional manufacturing and retail standards, so innovation for new products is incentivized, and to ensure that these products are regulated to promote tobacco harm reduction and are not categorized as tobacco products,” he said. The US and Canada have differing rules on vape products, making manufacturing, labeling, and other production efforts complicated for the industry.
Canadian Vape Standards
Canada classifies and regulates vapes separately from cigarettes. “Canada has already enacted legislation which puts electronic vaping products in a separate category from tobacco products,” Casey said. He announced that CVA “is excited to work with AEMSA as it moves forward developing its Generation 2 standards for e-liquids, e-liquid components, vaporizer hardware, and retail accreditations.”
The Canadian Vaping Association works closely with Health Canada, their regulator. “We know that they view professional-grade manufacturing standards and retail accreditations to be a critical part of its new regulations,” CVA’s Casey said. “We will be providing input to them from the work we do with AEMSA in this new Alliance,” Casey stated.
American Vape Standards
AEMSA, CVA’s US counterpart, seemed equally enthusiastic to revamp vape rules. “AEMSA has been in the standards business for more than five years now. We are currently updating a second generation of e-liquid manufacturing standards and developing new standards that will be state-of-the-art for e-liquid components, hardware and accreditation standards for retailers,” Eley said. Of the two countries, the US has more stringent and antiquated regulations and laws for vapes and vape products.
The US vape industry is regulated by the FDA. The FDA classifies vape products as tobacco products, which has led to the agency’s hardline positions on vape regulation to date. ““FDA will be going through an advance notice of proposed rulemaking for electronic vapor product standards….The work that we produce through this Alliance in producing Generation 2 standards will help guide FDA in that process,” Eley noted.
The Work Begins
NAVA further announced a “US -Canadian Best Brain Exchange,” according to Business Wire. US AEMSA members will travel to Ottawa, Canada to meet with CVA officials, and Canadian industry members will travel likewise to Washington, DC to meet with members of congress and FDA officials. The report states that details are still in the works, and further details will “be announced shortly.”