As electronic cigarettes continue to captivate the world, the competition has become fierce. Many companies are trying to draw attention to their eliquids by marketing them as organic or natural, but that could be risky. In Washington State, three eliquid companies have landed in hot water with authorities because they claimed their eliquids were organic without having proper certification.
The Washington State Attorney General’s office filed a lawsuit this week against Alchemy E-lixers, claiming that the company’s labels and health claims are deceptive and unproven. Alchemy offers a line “100 percent organic” eliquids, but the Attorney General said without certification, it is illegal to call any product organic. Officials also required Jai Mundai and Orb Vapor to remove the word “organic” from their eliquid labels as well.
The reigning Attorney General in Washington, Bob Ferguson, said these ecig companies must be held accountable. “Washington consumers have a right to expect product labels to be truthful.”
Ferguson said Alchemy’s eliquids do contain some organic ingredients, but they are not certified and not all ingredients are truly organic. Furthermore, Washington State law requires 70 percent of ingredients to be organic before a product is even eligible for certification.
The increased pressure on ecig companies doesn’t stop with this lawsuit. Ferguson has also teamed up with Governor Jay Inslee to push for new legislation that classifies ecigs as tobacco products. Ferguson believes ecigs need to be closely regulated and restricted because of the risks associated with nicotine. “Nicotine, which e-cigarettes often use as a delivery device, is a highly addictive drug – as addictive as heroin and cocaine – and harmful to adolescent and young adult brain development,” he said.
The FDA has yet to issue any official regulations for ecigs, but it could happen within the next few months. Until then, states are responsible to create their own legislation to regulate ecig sales.
Do you think ecig companies should avoid calling their liquids “organic”? Does it worry you that some of these brands are misrepresenting their products?