April 4, 2015
“The good flavors of some produce are especially attractive to children.”
I’ve been actively researching and following the evolution of e-cigarettes for a number of years. Over that time I’ve read a lot of stories, opinions and regulatory actions, proposed or implemented, in countries all over the world. Some are based on solid, well documented evidence. Many others are based on ignorance or ideology with no objective basis. I thought I had pretty much seen it all. Until now.
An article written by Gary Wood and published on examiner.com details Texas legislation that, if adopted, will require grocery stores to “age restrict produce sections” beginning in September 2015. Yes, you read that right. Texas legislators and regulators are united in their effort and the governor is expected to sign the new law. Quoting Senator Knowsamosta “Age restrictive produce sections, clearly displaying warnings, and carrying penalties and taxes to cover the cost to our society makes sense, quite frankly.” Why? Because some produce contains nicotine.
Nicotine is a naturally occurring liquid alkaloid. It is an organic compound made up of hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen and oxygen. Tobacco is a member of the nightshade family of plants. Also in the family – tomatoes, cauliflower, potatoes, peppers and let us not forget eggplant. So now you get it right? Not only are these flavors attractive to children, they are obviously a gateway to nicotine addiction and cigarette smoking.
Does the FDA know about this? A deeming proposal would seem to be urgently needed to classify these vegetables as “tobacco products”.
Public health organizations need to jump on this and get the word out – it appears that these vegetables are likely safer than cigarettes but they are not harmless. We simply do not have any clinical studies regarding the long term safety of eating cauliflower.
Federal and state governments need to move quickly to require child-resistant packaging and warning labels along with detailed ingredient listings and nicotine content.
The NIH needs to allocate at least $100 million for research grants to determine the risks of long term vegetable consumption. Universities applying for grants will need to provide detailed descriptions of methods that will be used to identify all known carcinogens in any detectable amounts, regardless of how small. It is recommended that vegetables charred black (beyond recognition) be tested as many consumers are known to prefer their vegetables thoroughly burned.
Eating vegetables also needs to be banned in all public places where use of tobacco products is already prohibited. The non-vegetable eating public has a right not to be exposed to second hand baked potato smoke.
Taxing vegetables exactly the same as tobacco products is clearly a high priority. We know from our experience with tobacco that taxes are one of the most effective tools in our arsenal for discouraging youth from ever getting into the vegetable habit. The last thing we want is to normalize eating vegetables. We cannot sit idly by and watch our kids fall prey to Big Veggies!
The current unregulated environment of vegetables is a clear public health risk. It’s like the “Wild West” out there. Immediate and decisive action is urgently needed to stifle the use of this latest threat to the health and well-being of our children.
Hat tip to Gary Wood for his brilliant satirical piece. Simply superb. Gary, in the unlikely event you should see my blog post, please forgive my much less skilled attempt at adding to the discussion. I just could not resist!
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Dave Coggin has a Master’s Degree in business and spent 35 years in corporate America. Co-founder and partner in DIYELS, Dave has spent the last five years actively researching and following the evolution of the e-cigarette industry. Based on that research, Dave is a strong proponent of e-cigarettes as the most promising option currently known for tobacco harm reduction. He may be contacted directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The opinions presented here are exclusively those of the author. Vaper’s Vortex is offered as a service to our customers and followers. Anyone considering e-cigarettes as an alternative to tobacco cigarettes should seek advice from a medical professional.