The vaping industry continues to adapt in accordance with FDA industry guidance and regulations, and Black Note is making a big one. As of June 15, 2020, we will only sell Black Note products directly to consumers on our website.
Why We’re Doing It
Public health is more important than monetary gains in our opinion. To best ensure our vaping liquid doesn’t end up in the hands of minors, we’ve decided to become the first and only e-liquid company to adopt a Direct to Consumer Business Model. Selling our products directly to age-verified consumers through our website is the most feasible way to monitor where our vaping liquid ends up.
FDA Distributor and Retailer Guidelines
Our decision is likewise in response to the FDA’s January 2020 “Distributor and Retailer Guidelines,” which outlines a particularly strong stance on age-verification and sales restrictions to minors. The agency is ready to hold manufacturers responsible for where their products end up, even when those products are sold via retailers and wholesalers out of their control.
The agency suggests manufacturers do things like:
- Screen retailers to ensure they have effective age-verification programs
- Set up things like mystery shopping programs and anonymous hotlines to report non-compliant sales from retailers
- Penalize retailers for noncompliance
- Report retailer violations to the FDA
For product applications to get through the PMTA process, the FDA demands that manufacturers must:
- Have complete knowledge and records of where every single product is going
- Bind retailers to regulations, establishing contractual penalties for those selling to minors
- Monitor and enforce penalties of non-compliance
“These recent policy statements further emphasize that it is no longer an excuse for ENDS manufacturers to not have complete information and control over their distribution networks and retailers, as some have argued in the past.”
What This Means for You
If you’re a consumer who can verify your age through our website, you can still purchase Black Note products that are allowed in your area. (Some states don’t allow menthol, for instance.)
U.S. wholesalers and retailers will no longer be able to purchase Black Note products through our website after June 15, 2020.
While this change was a difficult one to make, we feel it is in the best interest of all involved. It can decrease the risk of Black Note being sold to minors, keep our company in compliance with regulations, and allow us to continue to serve our direct customers going forward.