Research by Action on Smoking and Health (ASH), a lobbying organisation that campaigns against smoking, appears to back up Cleverly s arguments that e cigarettes are not a “gateway” into smoking

“There is not as yet any sign that non smokers are taking up e cigarettes, even amongst young people their products are tried by smokers,” says ASH chief executive Deborah Arnott, “Obviously that could change so it needs to be monitored over time because these products are being promoted more and more heavily so it is a potential risk.”

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) will launch a public consultation into the marketing of e cigarettes at the end of the month to investigate the potential pitfalls. E cigarette firms welcomed the consultation, arguing the current rules are out dated and not fit for purpose.

The BCAP code includes restrictions on “brand stretching” that were put into place to prevent tobacco firms from putting their logos on non cigarette products during broadcast ads.

These regulations were brought in before the concept of e cigarettes was invented. meaning e cigarette advertising is a near impossible minefield to navigate through.

Everett said it took 14 months to get the script for its first television ad approved by Clearcast, which launched in January 2013 and was Europe s first e cigarette TV ad.

“Interestingly radio is now the hardest media to achieve an acceptable electronic cigaretting advertising script through,” says Everett. “We ve had seven rejected in the last two months and they are extremely subtle and still being rejected.”

Excessive use

The ASA s consultation asks whether e cigarette brands agree their advertising should not encourage excessive use, target youths or people who are not currently nicotine users.

These are all statements Cleverly claims Nicoventures agrees with. He says “We are not in the business of trying to increase overall nicotine usage in the population, we are very much in the business of offering a less risky alternative to people who have chosen to smoke”.

The furore over the dangers of nicotine in e cigarettes is also over stated, believes Everett, because “nicotine is no more harmful than caffeine”

“The reason people think nicotine is harmful is because the most popular way of getting nicotine is through combusted tobacco leaf,” says Everett. “It is extremely difficult to ban e cigarette advertising when alcohol advertising is allowed.”

Even if the ASA goes easy on e cigarette advertising, the industry will then be faced with EU regulations, which are being pushed through via the Tobacco Products Directive (TBD) with a vote set for Wednesday (26 February) and if approved will come into force in two years.

Article 18 of the directive will prohibit “cross border” advertising of e cigarettes if they are not regulated as medicines, meaning any online, press, radio or TV advertising will be banned because they would be able to cross borders.

Divisive issue

The TPD s article 18 is a divisive issue and some 15 research scientists from around the world have written an open letter disputing the directive s conclusions.

“They have come out with some rules that by and large we think make sense, in some cases we would agree with the scientists who say they haven t entirely understand the science behind the category,” says Cleverly. “So some of the provisions in the directive aren t necessarily justifiable.”

With a General Election looming, it is easy to imagine the e cigarette industry becoming a political football.

If Article 18 is approved the only way to avoid a cross border ad ban is to get products classified as medicines, which is what the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is pushing through and will come into effect in 2016.

The MHRA is a contentious issue among e cigarette brands who are concerned it will not allow a light touch medicines regulatory framerwork.

“The initial desire by the MHRA to make cigarettes a medicinal product was in many ways inappropriate, impossible and stifling,” says Everett.

Undoubtedly tough times await for the e cigarette industry and, with a General Election looming, it is easy to imagine the sector could become a political football.

Scientific research indicates e cigarettes are less harmful than cigarettes and are an effective aide to quitting and its growth rate means it could become a sector as big as energy drinks.

The debate will no doubt revolve around whether e cigarette advertising glamorises tobacco smoking, which we will only know with time.

“The responsibility of the advertising should also sit with the brands and not with the regulators,” concludes Everett.

The blu cigs review

Cartoon of marlboro cigarettes

Blu Cigs is owned by publicly traded company Lorillard. (LO)

by Brett James

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Blu Cigs brand of electronic cigarettes has been around for quite some time now and it’s among the most commercial of brands out there in the respect that it’s a very basic design and is widely distributed in places like Walgreens. When the company was purchased in April 2012 by Lorillard, maker’s of Newport and other cigarette brands, they were instantly plugged into the distribution chain. Now widely distributed and under the umbrella of a brand that is publicly traded (LO), many people are coming across Blu because of their massive reach. They also have one of the most simple, yet effective logo’s in the business and it’s become quite iconic.

But are the Blu Cigs Reviews Good or Bad?

For the most part, they are right down the middle. We applaud Blu Cigs for their successes and obviously they are giants. While they are no doubt in the homes of many e cig smokers, there are many better options. Blu hasn’t changed or upgraded much from their initial launch, while many other brands have done so. “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” is a great moniker, but this world of e cigs is changing and improving right before them and they don’t seem to care (at least right now.)

That being said, many first time e cig smokers have no qualms about using Blu Cigs and they enjoy the vapor cigarette experience this brand provides them.

The Blu Cigs Design and packaging

One of the first things you will notice about a Blu e cigarette is its simple yet sophisticated approach at the overall design. While a lot of electronic cigarette brands get busy producing new designs to cater style preferences of the users, Blu has remained steady with their original offer. Blu electronic cigarette batteries are only available in two colors black or white.

Cherry Crush is one of the exotic flavors offered by Blu Cigs.

Blu has made sure that its cigarette is exactly the same size as a typical tobacco cigarette. This means that at least if you have an oral fixation for this thing, you will be quite satisfied. They also come equipped with a flip top case that replicates the size and style of a typical cigarette 20 pack. But this case is at the same time extremely stylish and easy to use. If that isn t enough, this carrying case also seconds as a portable charger for your electronic cigarette. The case can hold up to five cigarette cartridges and a single battery that gets charged when held in the case.

The Flip Top Design and Carry Case was Introduced by Blu. Give them credit there, they were the first with that style and many people copied them after&#8230

We would also like to point out that Blu Cigs is the only electronic cigarette brand that has put in an effort to incorporate social functions in it’s packaging. Blu Cigs gets this done by implementing a clever social feature that lights up your carrying case and causes it to vibrate whenever another Blu Cigs user or retailer is 50 feet near you. (That’s pretty darn cool.)

Kits offered and Various Options Available Include

The Original Starter Kit

This one comes with the basic stuff you need to get started. It includes

  • 1 charger/carrying case (No social features)
  • 2 batteries (white or black)
  • 1 USB charger
  • 1 Wall Charger
  • 5 Cartridges (choice of strength and flavor)

Premium Starter Kit

  • 1 charging pack/carrying case (social features)
  • 2 batteries
  • 1 USB Charger
  • 1 Wall Charger
  • 5 Cartridges (choice of strength and flavor)

Premium100 Starter Kit (only available in Black)

  • 1 charging pack/carrying case (social features)
  • 2 premium batteries
  • 1 USB charger
  • 1 Wall Charger
  • 5 cartridges (choice of strength and flavor)

Note The premium Blu Cigs batteries are longer and heavier in nature than the shorter style. This is consistent with every brand for sale the longer battery will always last longer and kick out more vapor.

Vapor and taste

Blu Cigs boasts that it has the best flavors because all its flavors are made from U.S only ingredients. We like the fact that Blu is using U.S only ingredients, but does the taste and vapor really live up to the claims made by the brand?

Perhaps it does, perhaps it doesn t. It completely depends on the type of user. For us, we believe that there are far better brands out there producing double the vapor and better taste. But that may be because we love a kick in the throat. As far as the normal battery model goes, we weren t that impressed by the vapor production. But after testing the premium battery offering, we believe it is the right choice for chain smokers or anyone who wants a hard throat kick.

Conclusion on Blu Cigs

Blu Cigs is something we’d recommend to social smokers. Those of you who smoke daily or need something that has multiple flavors of tobacco cartridges, go with another option. But, if you are a social smoker, you can’t lose with Blu. They are always nearby and offer more distribution than just about anyone.

So, with that caveat, we can recommend this brand to many of you just starting out with e cigs, but if you want the top rated e cigarette brand, just click the V2 Cigs review and thank us later.