The UK Flavour Association has issued a statement regarding the use of flavourings in e-cigarettes.

This statement outlines the position of the flavour industry with regard to the use of food flavourings in e-cigarettes.

The full statement is below:

The UK Flavour Association’s primary focus is to support members who manufacture flavourings for use in food and beverages.

As such, we work with the European (EFFA) and International (IOFI) Trade Associations to ensure flavouring substances are safe for consumption. In Europe, all flavouring substances are evaluated by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and, if authorised, are added to the European Commission’s Union List of flavouring substances.

These flavouring substances have, however, only been evaluated for safety when ingested, not when inhaled. Therefore, the association is not in a position to endorse the use of flavourings in applications such as e-cigarettes.

This is in line with the position of the International Organization of the Flavor Industry (IOFI) below:

“IOFI cannot support the safety of use of flavouring substances in e-cigarettes based solely on the fact that these flavouring substances have been declared safe for use in food and beverage according to their intended use.

The routes of flavour exposure between e-cigarettes and foods are fundamentally different: initial systemic exposure to flavors from food occurs primarily via the digestive tract, whereas for e-cigarettes it is likely to occur via the oral cavity and possibly the upper respiratory tract.

While the use of flavors in e-cigarettes may ultimately not pose a safety concern, current safety assessment paradigms and much of the available metabolism and toxicity data for flavouring substances cannot be used to draw that conclusion.”

There is currently no global regulatory authority assigned to evaluate the use of flavourings in e-cigarettes. Companies who wish to supply flavourings for this use should ensure they have the appropriate risk assessment in place to satisfy the requirements of the General Products Safety Directive (2001/95/EC)*, REACH (EC 1907/2006)* and, where applicable, the Tobacco Products Directive (2014/40/EU)*.

*Please refer to version currently in force.