The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently rejected portions of an application by Big Tobacco’s Phillip Morris to market Heat-not-Burn (HnB) technology as a lower-risk alternative to smoking. However, the panel did suggest that they might allow a different sort of marketing tactic. They instead suggested that Phillip Morris claim that its iQOS device exposes users to lower levels of toxins associated with combustible cigarettes.
News of the FDA rejection began appearing in mainstream media. Vaping advocacy groups and bloggers began picking up the story as well. One of the primary reasons for vaping’s interest in the story involves the application process itself.
Thanks to the FDA deeming regulations of the Obama era, vape retailers will be forced to undergo the same expensive, complicated, and time-consuming Pre-Market Tobacco Application (PMTA) process. Vaping was curious to see how the whole process would pan out.
By reporting on the FDA rejection, has the vaping industry unintentionally muddied the waters for a possible repeal of the FDA deeming regulations at some point in the future? By simply writing about the story, has the vaping industry somehow unofficially endorsed HnB technology as its electronic counterpart? Is HnB technology giving vaping a bad name?
HnH technology is NOT the same as vaping
As news of the FDA’s decision began to spread, many news outlets began labeling the iQOS as a “HnB cigarette.” Can the average American reading a news article distinguish the differences between vaping and HnB Technology? If history teaches us anything, the answer is likely “no!”
Using Heat-no-Burn technology is not the same thing as vaping, just like tobacco is not the same thing as nicotine. The most glaring difference between HnB and vaping devices is that the latter are 100% tobacco-free. HnB technology still uses tobacco. It just heats it to lower temperatures rather than setting it on fire. Unfortunately, it’s the tobacco (not the nicotine) that produces the toxic tar that kills millions of smokers.