NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — A new law in Louisiana is causing problems for the vape industry. The law requires all non-tobacco products to be certified by the state.
“We had all types of brands up in here and now it’s a desert,” says retailer Jonathan Chaisson.
Even with almost 400 vape products still authorized for sale in Louisiana, a recently released list showcasing authorized users are not the kind of vapes people come in for, explained Ahmed.
“They are only leaving us with the twisted brand. They are only leaving us with ten flavors. It is not all the flavors,” says Ahmed.
The state will be able to fine retailers selling unapproved products. Chaisson says popular disposable vapes make up a lot of his sales and he knows it’s going to take some time for his customers to get acquainted with the new law.
“A lot of people will literally pull up, open the door and just look in. They just walk off because they don’t see their product. If not in a month or maybe in two months, the shops are going to be pretty much brand new,” says Chaisson.
He adds that this not only impacts his regular customers but also the tourists visiting the area.
“When they see how little of a selection I have, the slim pickings, they are just like what is going on? They are in awe. I explain what’s going on, and Louisiana policy and they are just shocked like my state doesn’t do this,” says Chaisson.
With shelves empty, the hope is that the law will be reversed, in order to avoid the big impact it’s expected to have on small businesses.
“They are putting a lot of people out of business from that. Some people go to certain shops to get disposables and if they don’t have the disposables they don’t like to shop over there for the juices. They are going to end up shutting down,” says Ahmed.
To check out which products are on Louisiana’s list, you can visit the Louisiana Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control’s website.
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