Friday, 19 June 2015

Vaporshark releases Diacetyl and Acetyl propionyl tests for all their e-liquids

As many probably know already, Vaporshark have tested all their e-juices for diacetyl (DA) and acetyl propionyl (PA) and the results are available at their website. Not only have they done this for their own line of juices, but they've done it for all the 3rd party juices they sell as well, and I think this is the first time a vendor has done that. I first read about this earlier this week on the grumpy vaper blog, but apparently the tests was done like a month ago and the results have been available since then as well. This is according to Mike from Vaporshark who was interviewed by Russ at the Click, Bang! show. Dr. Farsalinos was also on this show talking about the issue and I REALLY recommend listening to it, especially if you're still wondering what to think of all this. It's very enlightening: http://media.soundcloud.com/stream/fXhb26Iw0JNg.mp3

I think what Vaporshark has done here is absolutely great. As Dr. Farsalinos repeats a lot of times on the show as well, DA and AP in e-liquid does not have to be there(!) If you're wondering what the problem with these chemicals are, I recommend again that you listen to Dr. Farsalinos (he comes on around 47 minutes into the show), who explains this very well. In short, research done within the food industry has shown that people inhaling this have a risk of developing bronchiolitis obliterans, also known as Popcorn lung (I think I've read somewhere that it was first discovered in popcorn factories), which is a disease pretty similar to COPD... not very pleasant that is. From what I understand, it's not like you will develop this for sure, and you get DA and AP from smoking as well (so don't go back to smoking guys), and it's not a huge risk I believe, but there is a risk. What Vaporshark now has done is given us the information, so we're able to choose if we want to take that risk or not. And they have also put quite some pressure on a lot of e-liquid manufacturers to re-formulate some of their juices. 

Most vaping advocates I've talked to, or read about, agrees that vaping is not necessarily risk free, but it is a lot less dangerous than smoking. In other words we are not trying to avoid all risks, but we're trying to minimize it. So shouldn't we then accept the risks from DA and AP in e-liquid as well? Again I have to agree with Dr. Farsalinos on this: No we shouldn't. The point is that these substances are put in there on purpose by the makers of the juices, at least at the levels we see in some of the juices (ppm and ug/mL is the same number, had to ask Dr. Farsalinos about this I have to admit). Dr. Farsalinos explains that when we're looking at 10 or 20 ppm this is not very much and might be just contaminants in the flavourings used, and I guess these levels are also so low that it's pretty much ok to vape. However, when we see levels of 400-500 or even as high as 1800 ppm, this is something that is put in there on purpose to get the flavour they want to produce. DA and AP is from what I know used to create kind of creamy flavours, but it is also possible to make these flavours without DA and AP, which means these risks are totally avoidable. It is however difficult to set some kind of limit to what should be allowed in the juices, as the risk depends on how much you e-juice you consume every day. We might have to accept that there will be some trace levels coming from contamination, but I agree with Dr. Farsalinos that we shouldn't accept that these chemicals are added to the liquids on purpose, and this could very well become reality in future regulations.

I really hope this move by Vaporshark will put some focus on this and make some e-liquid-manufacturers reformulate their juices. Some manufacturers are already publishing similar tests for their juices, so they're not all bad :) As far as I know there is no kind of central database where you can go and look up your favourite juice, but the Vaporshark website now has data for quite a few popular brands. Hopefully they'll update if any of the manufacturers do reformulate their juices.

Personally I've learned a lot by listening to Dr. Farsalinos talking on the show I linked to above, and for now I'm going to stick with juices with no or at least very low levels of DA and AP. For me that means I'll stop vaping some that I do like, but it also means I might discover something new and even better. As I said, quite a few juice makers have already done the tests and published the results, and we now have the Vaporshark site for reference as well so I mean, why take the risk when it's so easy to avoid? 

There is also a discussion about this going on on the We are Casaa facebook page, where Dr. Farsalinos also clarifies his views on the matter, which I recommend reading.
 
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