FDA regulations could kill the vaping industry

Published: May. 25, 2016 at 5:05 PM EDT
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Knoxville vape companies are fuming mad after the FDA passed new regulations this month. They say this new law will put an end to the vaping industry.

They are shocked at how far reaching the regulations are, and now they're afraid the new restrictions will destroy the industry.

Jody Kinchen smoked cigarettes for 3 decades, before vaping.

Kinchen says, "I quit smoking that day and never touched another cigarette. I never thought about another cigarette."

His new hobby could soon come to a halt because owners say new FDA regulations could shut down their shops.

One of those liquid manufacturers like Hunter Allison with Tri State Vape Company will have to submit an application for each new product. He says that would come with a hefty price tag. Hunter Allison says, "The absolutely lowest price I've seen is $300,000 per product and that's $4.5 million for me and there's no possible way."

He's already put $150,000 into his e-liquid manufacturing company.

He says more money will put him out of business.

"Knoxville Vapor" buys Allison's creations.

Store owners say they've made some major contributions to the community employing 15 people and generating $280,000 in tax revenue. They say new regulations will put them out of business, and they won't be the only ones. Bill Livezey says, "They've basically blanketed the industry with such rigorous standards that no one is going to survive this."

Right now Knoxville Vapor allows free sampling, but new regulations could change that too. Livezey says, "I'm going to have to charge people who come in here and try zero nicotine. There's no nicotine in the testers. It's ridiculous."

All of this has Jody Kinchen worried about his new life without tobacco.

Kinchen says, "I know a lot of people who would go back to smoking and I don't want that to happen just because of the health issues."