Vaping Goes Mainstream: Implementing Regulatory Testing in a Burgeoning Industry

From: R&D Magazine

by Leslie Henderson, Operations Director, Broughton Laboratories and Darren Barrington-Light, Software Marketing Specialist, Informatics & Chromatography Software at Thermo Fisher Scientific

Manufacturers in the relatively new and, up until now, unregulated electronic cigarette industry have had little need for analytical testing until recently. As vaping has become mainstream, the market for e-cigarettes has come under increased scrutiny. In May 2016, the EU implemented the updated Tobacco Products Directive (TPD), which governs the manufacturing and selling of tobacco products, to include e-cigarettes and e-liquids. In 2016 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also updated the Premarket Tobacco Application (PMTA) to include vaping products. These updated directives and regulations require manufacturers to register and rigorously test their products if they want to continue to market them. As regulations continue to evolve, the industry is looking to advanced instrumentation and analytical testing to comply with new quality standards.

Meeting new emissions requirements

An e-cigarette operates by heating a nicotine-containing solution (e-liquid) to create a vapor which is inhaled by the user. The pyrolysis of the nicotine containing liquids can form harmful by-products, which in certain instances can be present at levels that may pose a risk to the consumer. While it is generally accepted that vaping products offer a less harmful alternative compared to combustible tobacco products, the lack of regulation in this industry has meant that there were limited controls in place to protect the user.

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