The vaping crisis is spreading…

A couple of weeks ago, I gave you the early heads up on a potential issue for cannabis companies.

A sickness is spreading across the country that’s affecting people who have been vaping. At the time, it was known to have affected around 150 people. Investigators did not know what the cause was, or even if the illness came from vaping nicotine, cannabis, or other products.

Now, the mystery illness is spreading further.

There are as many as 450 cases in 33 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands. So far, five people have died from the illness.

At the time of my first report, I told you that “this will most likely turn out to be an ingredient problem – that all or most of the people affected will have vaped something they shouldn’t have.”

The mystery is not yet solved. But investigators are getting closer, and more parties have joined the hunt for a solution.

And, it’s increasingly looking like I was right. The vast majority of cases seem to be associated with vaping illegal cannabis products.

That’s why I wanted to make sure to get this update out to you about how it could affect both legitimate and illegitimate vape companies…

What We Know

Some press reports specifically link the disease to a company called Dank Vapes.

However, the New England Journal of Medicine reported about that issue, and it tells me that Dank Vapes simply seems to be the most common brand of illicit cannabis and not that the disease is specifically tied to that company.

Dank Vapes is also among the most commonly forged labels for illicit cannabis, so some people may think they used Dank Vapes but, in fact, used an entirely different product.

Another issue that I think the press may have wrong is the association with Vitamin E Acetate, a chemical that resides in many food-grade oils and is sometimes used for vapes. It’s definitely not something people should be inhaling, but I think it’s still an open question whether it is the culprit in these cases.

I think the best analysis of this illness came from former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb. He opines that we are really looking at three illnesses all caused by a contaminant in illicit THC and CBD products. There’s even a chance illicit nicotine e-cigarettes have a contaminant that is causing health issues.

The exact agent causing the illness has yet to be uncovered with certainty, but we can be fairly certain that it is something that illicit vape manufacturers are introducing into their products – not something that comes from legitimate vaping companies.

What’s Ahead for the Vape Market

Unfortunately, legitimate vaping companies are not in the clear just yet.

Even though it’s extremely unlikely that legal vaping products – cannabis or nicotine – are related to the illness, there is growing political and potential regulatory backlash occurring.

The illness came just when the FDA started attacking Juul – the largest nicotine e-cigarette company – for improper marketing of its product.

The cannabis industry is growing so fast that IPO records are being broken every few months. Find out which companies could shatter the latest and hit up to $5 billion after IPO day right here.

The CDC is recommending that people do not vape at all until it has completed its investigation, and some state and local health authorities are echoing the recommendation.

The folks in Congress are starting to talk about more regulation of vape devices or even a nationwide recall.

Even Dr. Gottlieb is agitating for more regulation.

This illness is widespread enough that it can reasonably be called an epidemic, and it calls for swift action.

But any time regulators act swiftly, there’s a chance they will also swiftly overreact. Politicians and regulators can take measured scientific information and turn it into incorrect policy decisions.

This is going to be hanging over the vaping industry for quite some time. I don’t think it will slow the growth of the cannabis industry, but it may affect some vape makers, and it may cause some inventory adjustments among dispensary owners.

I’ll continue to track those developments and let you know as soon as I learn anything new.

Be safe,

Greg Miller

Executive Director, National Institute for Cannabis Investors


Comments

14 responses to “What’s Ahead for Vape and Cannabis Companies”

  1. Thank you for addressing this very threatening issue to vaping, oils, concentrates, distillation and the entire industry trying to get away from smoking organic Cannibis.

  2. Recommend strong prosecution and punitive jail time for people unconcerned with people’s health and only for $$$. Disgusting ethically and hard for investors and proponents of legal, clean products. Can only hope this will speed up the demise of illicit production and scare the ignorant away from buying whatever they can get their hands on.

  3. Greg, what do you think the near term affect will be for the companies in our portfolios that concentrate their business in the vaping market and vaping supplies?

  4. How about some info on the company’s that mainly produce vaping products. Shouldn’t we get away from these companies at least for the next year or so. I would think all this vaping backlash would cause their stock to drop seriously in the near future so who are the biggest ones with the highest concentration of their business in the vape line. I for one would think it a prudent measure for now and maybe we could pick them back up after their price drops and this whole mess blows over. What would you say Greg?

  5. After thousands of years of marijuana use, the substance has been found to be safe. In fact, there are many many benefits. When I watch people vape, the thing that stands out is the substantial amount of smoke. I am guessing that it is the smoke and not the ingredients that is causing the health problems. Smoke inhalation is deadly in house fires. When someone dies of smoke inhalation from a house fire, people don’t usually talk about the ingredients in the smoke. Those that place the blame on THC or CBD are simply wrong, or, they may have their own agenda against the use of marijuana.

  6. Greg I second Nelson Rowe on advising us who the main companies are that are producing vaping products as their main line. This would be something very useful to all of us since the market is still way down,
    Looking forward to a reply on this one shortly.

  7. Hi Greg; I had a doctor’s appt with my naturopathic physician yesterday and we talked extensively about my vaping use. She had information regarding the ingredients to avoid: Vitamin E Acetate; vegetable glycerin and solvents. I don’t have a green card in the state I reside in because I am not interested in being on any federal list for this; however when I head out to a neighboring state next month to stock up, this is the guidance I will be using for purchasing my vape cartridges. After quitting smoking leaf, my congestion cleared up, and that is why I am sticking to vaping, both CBD and THC. Just a FYI from a member 🙂

  8. I have heard that oils turn to vapor then returns to an oil state in the lungs of vapors. Is this something you have heard of? It makes sense to me.

  9. Yes How about a list of companies most likely to have their stock affected from the vaping issues. Really don’t feel we should have to pay for additional level of membership to receive information like this !!

  10. Is this the appropriate place to ask for help?
    I want to invest in the top two THC/ETOH Breathalyzers.
    I think Hound Labs is one of them but I can’t find a ticker.
    I can’t remember the name of the other one.
    Seems like the German one, that analyzed saliva, was discredited.
    I’d like to get in at low cost, and then ride this out to full implementation of standards of intoxication and a standard machine most likely to be the Motorola radio of the breathalyzer industry. Please tell me what you think.

  11. I first was vaping only ground flowers, and no problems other than the

    original “Stoner’s Cough.” Then, one day I decided to try vaping oil,

    which reminded me of the 60’s/70’s when we used to do hash oil,
    usually rubbing it onto the flowers used in a pre-roll. So, in my honest
    opinion, using a name brand that tells you how they process without
    solvents or odd additives, it was ok. Cost being a factor, I used a local
    brand at half the price of the name brand, and found myself coughing
    much more, so I quit that product, due to the vaping crisis. I am back
    to normal, not using cheap, off the market products from now on!
    Stay Healthy is my Mantra, Healthy wishes to all members, Good Luck!

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