Federal proposal for E-cigs likely won't change much for local sellers

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) The FDA's proposal to regulate electronic cigarettes like regular cigarettes would bring sweeping changes to the industry, but a local seller says he thinks people will continue to buy.

The regulations will allow the Food and Drug Administration to regulate all aspects of e-cigarettes, the popular replacement for smoking cigarettes. The FDA regulations would be similar to those of traditional tobacco cigarettes, even though e-cigarettes don't contain tobacco.

"Generally your mixes are PG and VG, which are vegetable glycerin, which you can go buy at Earth Fare or Walmart," David Moyer of Mike's Electronic Cigarettes explained.

Moyer said that because it's a mixture of items that can be bought at any grocery store with liquid nicotine, the FDA may have a hard time regulating it.

"I really don't see how they're going to fully regulate it to say people can't do this...when people can go out and make it themselves," Moyer said.

But the FDA regulations would try to prevent that. Part of the stipulation is that all ingredients would fall under FDA guidelines.

"I've seen a lot of people coming off cigarettes, people who have been smoking their entire lives, and they're like, this has done it for me," Moyer said.

But the new rules wouldn't allow a manufacture to advertise any added health benefits like that to e-cigarettes.

Other big changes would be required health warning labels, being 18 to purchase, and producers can be inspected by the FDA at any time.

The FDA says there hasn't been enough studies done to determine any health hazards from e-cigarettes.

One thing the regulations don't address is regulating the flavors of the nicotine, which some argue is a way to draw in a younger demographic to buying the product. With flavors like bubble-gum and caramel apple, health officials have argued that may entice kids and young adults to try e-cigarettes sooner.

The FDA publicized its proposal Thursday. It's likely to take at least a year before any changes would be made.

Moyer said he'll comply with whatever regulations are set.

"We want it to be something that's very safe for our consumers," Moyer added.

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