ACTOR AND ACADEMY AWARD NOMINEE ERIC ROBERTS TO SPEAK AT SFATA CONFERENCE

– MEDIA ADVISORY –

Roberts to Deliver Keynote Address on “Why I Vape” at SFATA’s Annual Conference & B2B Expo

WHAT: Actor and Academy Award Nominee Eric Roberts will share his personal story from smoking to vaping and the importance of advocacy as the vapor industry comes to a critical crossroads under a new Food & Drug Administration (FDA) regulatory landscape.

WHO: A cadre of academics, researchers, analysts and policy makers, as well as key business leaders, will participate at the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association’s (SFATA) Annual Conference and B2B Expo, “Revolution 2 Evolution: Next Steps 2016,” October 19-21, at the Diplomat Resort & Spa in Hollywood, FL.

WHEN: Thursday October 20, 2016 @ 1:30pm (Eric Roberts to Speak)

WHERE: SFATA Annual Conference & B2B Expo | Diplomat Resort & Spa Hollywood – 3555 South Ocean Drive | Hollywood, FL 33019

WHY: As of August 8, 2016, the FDA started regulating the vaping industry under the 2009 Tobacco Control Act, which states, among other provisions, that any product that was not on the market prior to February 15, 2007 must be submitted for a lengthy approval process. The new regulatory landscape set forth by the FDA has created an enormously cost-prohibitive environment for manufacturers to market their products to adult smokers and vapers. Potentially millions of adult vapers will return to smoking, and thousands of small businesses will be shut down, putting an estimated 37K to 57K employees out of work unless Congress acts to change the 2007 date, which will allow for the rest of the FDA regulations to continue to be applied, and gives the industry time to pursue more appropriate regulations.

About SFATA

Founded in 2012, the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA) is the largest trade association in the vapor products industry with more than 1,400 members and 28 state chapters located across the country, representing online retailers, brick and mortar vendors, distributors, manufacturers, professional service providers, importers and wholesalers. For more information, visit SFATA.org or join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter @SFATA. Download a copy of SFATA’s “Top 10 Vapor Facts: Demystifying Misconceptions about the Vapor Industry” by visiting http://bit.ly/toptenvaporfacts.

NATIONWIDE COMMUNITY OF VAPERS JOIN HANDS TO SAVE LIVES

— MEDIA ADVISORY —

Demonstration Follows Screening of Award-Winning Documentary ‘A Billion Lives’

WHAT: Hundreds of vapers will join hands in solidarity to bring awareness for “A Billion Lives,” a true story of the vaping revolution  and tragic  corruption leading to a billion deaths around the world caused by smoking. The demonstration is a precursor to Hands for a Billion Lives, a national campaign to encourage everyone – vapers, smokers, non-smokers and non-vapers, as well as elected officials – to see the film while sending a message to Congress to support federal legislation that will keep vapor products on the market. Hands for a Billion Lives will be nationally recognized on Saturday, October 22, when thousands of participants in cities across the country are invited to join hands at precisely 2:22 p.m. local time, to symbolize a protective barrier to defend the billion lives estimated to die because of smoking-related disease.

WHO: Organized by the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association, the largest trade group representing and managing the interests of the vapor industry with more than 1,400 members and 28 state chapters across the country.

WHERE: Miramar Cultural Center (MCC) — 2400 Civic Center Place | Miramar, FL 33025

WHEN: Wednesday, October 19, 2016

6 p.m. — Meet “A Billion Lives” Director Aaron Biebert

6:30 p.m. — Screening of “A Billion Lives”

8:30 p.m. — Hands for a Billion Lives Demonstration (MCC Botanical Garden)

WHY: As of August 8, 2016, the Food & Drug Administration started regulating the vaping industry under the 2009 Tobacco Control Act, which states, among other provisions, that any product that was not on the market prior to February 15, 2007 must be submitted for a lengthy approval process. The new regulatory landscape set forth by the FDA has created an enormously cost-prohibitive environment for manufacturers to market their products to adult smokers and vapers. Potentially millions of adult vapers will return to smoking, and thousands of small businesses will be shut down, putting an estimated 37K to 57K employees out of work, unless Congress acts to change the 2007 date, which will allow for the rest of the FDA regulations to continue to be applied, and gives the industry time to pursue more appropriate regulations.

About SFATA

Founded in 2012, the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA) is the largest trade association in the vapor products industry with more than 1,400 members and 28 state chapters located across the country, representing online retailers, brick and mortar vendors, distributors, manufacturers, professional service providers, importers and wholesalers. For more information, visit SFATA.org or join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter @SFATA. Download a copy of SFATA’s “Top 10 Vapor Facts: Demystifying Misconceptions about the Vapor Industry” by visiting http://bit.ly/toptenvaporfacts.

SFATA TO HOLD ANNUAL CONFERENCE & B2B EXPO

Mitch Zeller, Director of the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products, To Lead Q&A at SFATA’s Annual Conference;

Keynotes Include Grover Norquist and Actor Eric Roberts; Special Viewing of ‘A Billion Lives’ at Miramar Cultural Center

WASHINGTON, D.C., October 3, 2016 — A cadre of academics, researchers, analysts and policy makers, as well as key business leaders, will participate at the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association’s (SFATA) Annual Conference and B2B Expo, “Revolution 2 Evolution: Next Steps 2016,” October 19-21, at the Diplomat Resort & Spa in Hollywood, FL.

“Businesses concerned about the future of the vaping industry should attend our conference, since we will focus on how companies can fight and survive in this new regulatory environment,” said Pamela Gorman, executive director of SFATA. “Revolution 2 Evolution: Next Steps 2016 will help shape the narrative on public policy impacting vapor products, as well as inform and educate attendees on federal and state legislative strategies, and reporting requirements. Our goal is to help those in our industry sustain sales, while we push for proper regulation.”

Focusing on fighting and surviving in a post-deeming environment, the conference will begin on October 19 with a special viewing of the award-winning documentary, “A Billion Lives,” being held at the Miramar Cultural Center in Miramar, FL, followed by a special after party at the Diplomat Resort & Spa.

In addition to the B2B expo, conference highlights include a Q&A with Mitch Zeller, director of the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products, along with keynotes by Grover Norquist, president, Americans for Tax Reform, and Academy Award-nominated actor Eric Roberts, among others. Some of the conference topics include:

• State and Federal Legislative Strategies
• Staying Compliant in a Post-Deeming Environment
• FDA Registration Training
• Impact of Regulations on Product Development in the U.S. and Europe
• PMTA Guidance and the True Cost of Compliance
• Battling Junk Science: Ethics in Vaping Research
• Legal Challenges to the FDA’s Deeming Rule

About SFATA
Founded in 2012, the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA) is the largest trade association in the vapor products industry with more than 1,400 members and 28 state chapters located across the country, representing online retailers, brick and mortar vendors, distributors, manufacturers, professional service providers, importers and wholesalers. For more information, visit SFATA.org or join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter @SFATA. Download a copy of SFATA’s “Top 10 Vapor Facts: Demystifying Misconceptions about the Vapor Industry” by visiting http://bit.ly/toptenvaporfacts

 

CALIFORNIA’S PROPOSITION 56 TO IMPOSE HUGE TAX ON VAPOR PRODUCTS THAT WILL HURT SMALL BUSINESS AND KILL JOBS

November 8 Ballot Measure Lines the Pockets of Special Interest Groups,

Does Little to Help People Stop Smoking     

 

SACRAMENTO, Calif., September 13, 2016 – Proposition 56 is flawed, imposing a heavy tax on California’s small businesses and will kill tens of thousands of local jobs, according to Protect Small Business and Smoke-Free Alternatives, No on 56, a recently formed ballot committee sponsored by the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA) to oppose the November 8, 2016 state-wide measure.

“At a time when California’s smoking rate has dropped to the second lowest of any state, special interests groups are seeking yet again to line their pockets through a regressive sin tax, extending a disproportionate astronomical tax to vapor products that only makes it harder for smokers to consider these devices as alternatives to combustible cigarettes,” said Kari Hess, small business owner and co-president of the Northern California chapter of the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association.

Under the proposed measure, vapor products will be subjected to a whopping $10 tax,* while the tax on a pack of combustible cigarettes may increase to $2.87. Californians should vote “NO” on Prop. 56 because:

  • 56 Will Hurt Small Business and Kill Jobs, making vapor products so expensive that California’s 3.8 million smokers will be less likely to consider them as alternatives to combustible cigarettes – forcing the many small businesses that comprise the vapor industry with the tens of thousands of people they employ – to fire staff, relocate or even close down.
  • 56 is Bad for Public Health, implying that the harmful health effects of tobacco are similar to those of vapor products and will only push people back to smoking cigarettes. Millions of former smokers in California and around the world already have switched to vaping, which science says is more than 95 percent less harmful than combustible tobacco.
  • 56 Lines the Pockets of Special Interest Groups, protecting inefficient programs that are losing money from declining tobacco tax revenues as smoking consumption rates continue to fall – including paying health insurance companies up to $1 billon for treating the very same patients they already treat today.
  • P 56 Will Cheat Schools Out of at Least $600 Million, amending the state constitution to divert education funding while not one penny of the new tax money will go to improve K-14 public schools.
  • 56 is a Regressive “Sin Tax” That Doesn’t Work, setting a disastrous precedent for more industry-specific taxes, also creating a funding shortfall for Medi-Cal that millions of needy Californians rely upon.
  • 56 Does Little to Help Stop Smoking, with only 11 percent of new tax money going toward programs to treat smokers or stop kids from starting.

“Prop. 56 is misleading to voters by falsely implying that the harmful health effects of tobacco are similar to vapor products,” continued Hess. “It is imperative that California voters understand the stark differences between vapor products and combustible cigarettes and vote NO on November 8.”

Editor’s note: More information on Protect Small Business and Smoke-Free Alternatives, No on 56, can be found by visiting: http://sfata.org/resources/flyers-and-graphics/.

*Based on an average wholesale cost of a 30 mL bottle of e-liquid.

About Protect Small Business and Smoke-Free Alternatives, No on 56

Protect Small Business and Smoke-Free Alternatives, No on 56, is sponsored by the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA), with funding by local California businesses, individual taxpayers and concerned citizens. Founded in 2012, the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA) is the largest trade association in the vapor products industry with more than 1,400 members and 28 chapters located across the country, representing online retailers, brick and mortar vendors, distributors, manufacturers, professional service providers, importers and wholesalers.

FORMER STATE LEGISLATOR PAMELA GORMAN APPOINTED EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF SMOKE-FREE ALTERNATIVES TRADE ASSOCIATION

Experienced Elected Official, Government Affairs Pro, and E-Cig Industry Advocate to Lead National Vapor Trade Association 

WASHINGTON, D.C., September 8, 2016 — The Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA), the largest trade group representing and protecting the interests of the vapor industry, today announced that Pamela Gorman will serve as the organization’s new executive director. In this role, Gorman will lead national and state advocacy and legislative efforts; oversee state chapters; and represent SFATA with regulatory agencies, including at industry events; among other responsibilities.

“Pamela is a perfect fit to lead SFATA against a host of challenges on the national and state levels, with strong experience in policy and advocacy, and as elected official,” said Cap O’Rourke, president, board of directors, SFATA. “On behalf of the board, we look forward to working closely with Pamela to fight regressive policies that harm the small businesses that comprise our industry, and stifle the potential vapor products can have on helping reduce the public harm caused by smoking.”

Click here to listen to a podcast interview with Pamela Gorman discussing key legislative and advocacy priorities for the association and the vapor industry or visit http://sfata.org/pamela-gorman-introduction.

Gorman founded U.S. Vapor Inc., a firm providing public affairs consulting to small business owners and advocacy non-profit organizations working in the vapor industry. Prior to that, she was Director of Government Relations for NJOY, Inc., where she built the first government affairs department and program for an independent (not tobacco-owned) manufacturer. She was responsible for budget development, advocacy, issue communications and execution of key business legislative initiatives and issue response.

“I am honored to join the vapor industry’s leading trade association and represent the interests of small business owners throughout the country who epitomize the American dream, creating jobs and investment in their communities, providing a significant alternative to smoking,” said Gorman. “Building upon the legacy of my predecessor, and leveraging the strength of our organization, I will continue the fight on behalf of these businesses and the consumers they serve, against industry-destroying policies and devastating  taxes currently facing our membership.”

Prior, she served as Senior Manager, Legislative Policy and Advocacy for RAI Services Company specializing on policy issue areas related to “tobacco harm reduction” and youth tobacco prevention. Among other responsibilities, she represented the company at conferences, as well as on an industry advisory board (We Card), and in policy discussions with thought leaders and policy makers.

Gorman’s in-depth understanding of the political and legislative landscape began when she was elected to serve as a State Representative in the Arizona House of Representatives from 2005-2006 and later as a State Senator in Arizona from 2007-2010. She was part of the Senate Leadership team in her last term, also serving as the Senate Majority Whip.

About SFATA

Founded in 2012, the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA) is the largest trade association in the vapor products industry with more than 1,400 members and 28 chapters located across the country, representing online retailers, brick and mortar vendors, distributors, manufacturers, professional service providers, importers and wholesalers. For more information, visit SFATA.org or join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter @SFATA. Download a copy of SFATA’s “Top 10 Vapor Facts: Demystifying Misconceptions about the Vapor Industry” by visiting http://bit.ly/toptenvaporfacts.