PETA becomes unlikely ally of vapers against FDA e-cig regulations
The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) are never afraid to vocalize their outrage over unfair government regulations. So when the new FDA e-cig regulations were first announced on May 5, many PETA members immediately smelled something fishy. Less than one month later, PETA has come out publically in support of the vaping community, but not for the reasons that many vapers might think.
According to Joseph Manuppello, a PETA Senior Research Associate, the organization believes that the FDA’s new requirement for a Pre-Market Tobacco Applications process (PMTA) will only result in a significant increase in animal testing. According to the FDA, all manufacturers of electronic cigarettes and their e-liquids must prove that their products are safe for public consumption by meeting very strict guidelines. Understandably, PETA assumes that e-juice retailers will be forced to test their products on our furry friends.
“Countless animals will suffer and die now that newer tobacco products, such as e-cigarettes, will be required to FDA approval in order to enter or remain on the market…The FDA has stated that animal tests will still be required for toxicological issues that it claims cannot be addressed by non-animal approaches—even though we know that the link between tobacco and lung cancer in humans was obscured for years because animal tests did not demonstrate this relationship.”
(Related Article: NEW FDA E-CIG REGULATIONS AND THE MILLION-DOLLAR PMTA PROCESS)
Manuppello also suggests that the vaping industry first consult with the Center for Tobacco Products (CTP) to solicit advice on whether animal testing is even “appropriate,” or to determine alternative testing methods that do not involve animals of any kind. Unfortunately, many in the vaping community believe that consulting with the CTP would only open an entirely new can of worms.
Mixed views on the PETA Endorsement
While many e-cig retailers and manufacturers might initially appreciate the support of a large, well-known organization with millions of supporters, others are not so sure that PETA is the best choice of advocate in the battle for vaping rights. After all, PETA members have a reputation for creatively expressing their outrage by throwing red paint on anyone wearing fur coats. And the vaping industry is already being miss-identified as a partner of Big Tobacco. Vapers are essentially trying to improve their public image, not further radicalize it.
And then there is the issue of asking the Center for Tobacco Products for advice. This is simply not an option. The very basis of the vaping industry’s argument regarding the FDA e-cig regulations is that e-cigs are not tobacco products. So, asking advice from an agency specializing in tobacco products would make e-cig retailers look like hypocrites. While it is always nice to make new friends, PETA may be one that the vaping community wants to keep at arm’s length.
(Related Article: BREAKING NEWS: WHITE HOUSE SQUASHES PROPOSED FDA BAN OF FLAVORED E-LIQUIDS)