California Vape Flavor Ban SB-793 Signed Into Law

California Flavor Ban SB-793

On Friday August 28, 2020, California Governor Newsome approved California Bill SB-793 and it was filed with the California Secretary of State the same day. For the full text of California bill SB-793 click here.

SB-793 bans the sale of flavored nicotine ejuices, the nicotine eliquid flavors that the majority of adult vapers prefer. Beginning January 1st, 2021, flavored ejuices and most flavored tobacco products will effectively be banned in the state of California. Only loose leaf tobacco cigarettes without a filter and premium cigars are not exempted from this restriction.

Flavored Tobacco Products Ban

SB-793 specifically bans characterizing flavors, which are described in the bill as distinguishable aromas and tastes other than the taste of tobacco or any byproduct of tobacco. Characterizing flavors include, but are not limited to, tastes or aromas relating to any fruit, chocolate, vanilla, honey, candy, cocoa, dessert, alcoholic beverage, menthol, mint, wintergreen, herb, or spice.

Cigarillos, menthol cigarettes and flavored nicotine eliquids are all getting the axe. 

More mercy was shown to flavored shisha tobacco lounges than to vape shops. The sale of flavored shisha tobacco products is permitted for sale at specialized tobacco retailers that are engaged in the sale of shisha products and do not admit anyone under the age of 21.

California Bill SB-793

  • This bill would prohibit a tobacco retailer, or any of the tobacco retailer’s agents or employees, from selling, offering for sale, or possessing with the intent to sell or offer for sale, a flavored tobacco product or a tobacco product flavor enhancer, as those terms are defined, except as specified. The bill would make a violation of this prohibition an infraction punishable by a fine of $250 for each violation. The bill would state the intent of the Legislature that these provisions do not preempt or prohibit the adoption and implementation of local ordinances that impose greater restrictions on the access to tobacco products than the restrictions imposed by the bill, as specified. The bill would state that its provisions are severable. By creating a new crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.

Tobacco retailers who violate the California flavor ban are subject to a fine of $250 per violation. It is unclear if this fine applies per product or transaction at this time. The measure does not criminalize the possession of flavored tobacco.