WARNING: This product contains nicotine.
Nicotine is an addictive chemical.

WARNING: This product contains nicotine. Nicotine is an addictive chemical.

Utah Becomes 5th State to Approve PMTA Registry Law 

On March 21st, Gov. Spencer Cox signed Senate Bill 61. The bill made Utah the fifth state to enforce a PMTA Registry law, and the sixth state to ban flavored e-cigarette products. 

Senate Bill 61 will outlaw the sale of flavored e-cigarette cartridges and disposable devices that contain fruit, candy, dessert, alcoholic, spice, or mint-flavored e-liquids. Senators argue that the bill will reduce the number of young people who use e-cigarette products. 

Senate Minority Assistant Whip Jen Plumb, who led the bill and also acts as the Chief Medical Director for Utah Naloxone, an organization that seeks to reduce the number of opioid overdoes, has first-hand experience dealing with nicotine-addicted youth in hospitals. 

“I can’t even probably quantify the number of kids who come in and are really disturbed when during their multi-hour stay in emergency departments […] they start to withdraw from nicotine,”1A. Cabrera, “‘We vape, we vote’: Vape shops ask lawmakers not to ban sale of flavored vapes • Utah News Dispatch,” Utah News Dispatch, Feb. 21, 2024. https://utahnewsdispatch.com/2024/02/20/vape-shops-protest-ban-flavored-vapes/ Plumb said. “They start to ask about plugging in their devices.” She went on to say that she has had to put nicotine patches on kids to lessen their withdrawal symptoms. 

To push Senate Bill 61 through, Plumb presented survey data from the 2023 School Health and Risk Prevention (SHARP) survey. It found that almost 69% of school-age children who vape prefer flavors that are sweet or mimic alcohol. In contrast, only 2% preferred tobacco, 6% liked menthol, and 22% favored mint.  

The duality of enforcing a PMTA Registry yet still banning flavored e-liquids has not gone unnoticed.

Just weeks ago, we covered the controversy surrounding the push for PMTA Registries in each state. The proposed registry law, which intends to shift the onus of e-cigarette regulation from the FDA to state lawmakers, is riddled with loopholes. 

The biggest cause for concern is the approval process. Now, e-cigarette manufacturers who apply to Utah’s PMTA Registry need only to show proof that their products are under review by the FDA. In short, PMTA Registries are set up in such a way that allows manufacturers to sell previously illegal e-cigarette products to consumers, provided the FDA has not outright banned them.   

The ban will come into effect on Jan 1st, 2025. Yet again, e-cigarette manufacturers and retailers have to contend with the ever-changing landscape of vape regulations, some more logical than others. 

Beau Maxun, a representative from the Utah Vapor Business Association, argues that Senate Bill 61 only serves Big Tobacco, and will have a devastating impact on retailers in Utah. “I will sit here in front of you right now and tell you that if this committee had the courage to ban all tobacco products, I would walk away from every single one of my businesses,”2B. Beal-Cvetko, K. com | P. – Feb. 22, and 2024 at 8:03 A.m, “Utah lawmakers consider ban on flavored vapes; business owners say it helps Big Tobacco,” www.ksl.com. https://www.ksl.com/article/50884755/utah-lawmakers-consider-ban-on-flavored-vapes-business-owners-say-it-helps-big-tobacco Maxun said. “But the reality is that’s not what this committee is here to do.” 

Plum rebukes this idea, although she does admit that her goals “sound very nannyish” and “very shaking of the finger.” She concludes that “there is likely going to be some business model adjustments so that we can get these flavors out of the hands of our kiddos.”


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Lexi Burgess
Lexi Burgess
I keep my ear to the ground to report on Vaping, emerging health research, and new vape legislation. When the ever-changing landscape of the vape industry isn’t on my mind, I play badminton and read old horror novels.
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