What You Should Know About Organic Juices!
As vaping becomes more and more popular, we see a variety of enticing marketing strategies to make the pool of vapers out there want to buy a specific brand of e-juice. We all know that organic foods have been sought after by people for their health benefits and they come with a higher price tag as well. Although organic fruits and vegetables can be purchased, We’d like to question the validity of organic e-juices claims. For something to be considered organic, it needs to be approved by the USDA Organic Standards. Before a restaurant or grocery store can even advertise organic produce being sold, the store needs to be certified by the USDA National Organic Program. Needless to say, these vape shops do not meet these standards.
However, let’s break down the e-juice being sold so we can better understand organic eiuice claims. PG (Propylene Glycol) is used as part of the base for e-juice. As you already know, it is often used to give the throat hit as well as bind flavors to the base of the e-liquid. PG is also a synthetic compound. It is lab made and obviously not certified by the USDA as organic in any means. So any juice containing PG is not “organic.’’ Some juices contain Ethyl Alcohol or Ethanol that have many of the same properties as PG and it can be rated as an Organic compound, but it is dangerous to your health if used in high concentrations. You may even see some companies that advertise their juice as alcohol based. So those e-liquids can be organic but they could be really harmful. Even if you find 100% VG-based e-juice, the high priced and so-called “organic’’ e-liquid may not be organic at all.
VG (Vegetable Glycerin) can be organic. VG is derived from vegetables and as long as they are organically grown, there is no reason why VG cannot be an organic substance. In fact, if the e-liquid only uses VG as a base, an argument can be made that the e-liquid could be organic. The problem is that we can only trust that their claims of “organically grown’’ are true unless they can verify with a certification; and then how do we know that what is certified is the same as the batch you are about to vape? Some argue that the extraction process in creating Vegetable Glycerin is a chemical process, so does that invalidate the “organic’’ claim? Flavoring is almost always suspended in PG. As we already know, PG is not an organic compound. Most of the time the flavorings used are not organic either (even when they claim they are). So bear this in mind when purchasing “organic’’e-liquid. Some companies do sell natural and organic flavorings. Flavorings can be derived naturally, but they are generally weaker than engineered flavors and may vary a bit from batch to batch. But many of those flavors cannot because they are natural flavorings and that is as “strong’’ as nature makes them. Also, those non-PG-based “organic” flavorings could lead to something called lipid pneumonia (lung damaging disease) if inhaled.
Instead of being concerned with “organic’’ you need to be concerned about diketones and their derivatives (diacetyl, acetoin, and acetyl propionyl). These are not safe for inhalation. Many “organic’’ flavorings include them, like some fruits (berries, dragon fruit, lychee). They are safe for digestion, just not for inhalation. Organic flavor extracts that don’t use PG but are suspended in lipids, as well as biomolecules, should not be used in vaping. The term “organic’’ as we know it for food does not necessarily apply to e-juice. BTW, these diketone levels are independently lab-tested in all the e-juice flavors from Pink Spot, and they have certifications to prove them.
Last but not least there is the nicotine. Although nicotine may be natural and organic in nature, nicotine is not considered to be an “organic’’ product according to the USDA. There is no commercial source for certified “organic’’ nicotine. For the record, Pink Spot uses pharmaceutical grade nicotine of the highest quality and purity. So for an e-liquid to be completely organic (as some vendors and stores advertise) they have to be nicotine free and use only vegetable glycerin as its base.
Truly organic e-juice is costly to produce, even more costly to buy, and probably not profitable for most vape shops; so the price is a red flag if you are wondering if a juice is truly organic. Most sellers of juice who claim theirs is “organic’’ really mean they don’t use artificial flavors, colors (dyes), or sweeteners, but that by definition does not qualify as “organic.’’ If they want to promote PG-free juice, it seems that a more sincere way would be to simply say “PG-free”. There is a big difference between claims of organic e-juice and “Certified Organic” e-juice. There are many flavorings that are synthetic and this cannot be labeled as Organic or Certified Organic. If the e-juice is made from “natural’’ flavors and the glycerin is organic (meaning that it isn’t made from petroleum by-products) and the juice contains no nicotine, then you may have an organic e-juice.
If you want a certified organic e-juice, the process is much more detailed including the fact that each facility and/or processor of the materials going into the e-juice must be NOP (National Organic Program) certified which is no easy task to accomplish. I think it would be interesting to ask the local “organic’’ vape store (and vendors looking to sell us organic juices) how their juice manufacturer derives their ingredients. Any reputable supplier should be willing to share their ingredients list, especially if they are making organic claims. We/customers could also ask for their USDA NOP certificate. We caution you to beware of posers that will label their product as Organic yet it may not be. If you want to be sure, ask for the Organic Labeler Code for the product (often it is printed on the label somewhere). If they can’t give you that then it probably isn’t a certified product and they could be reported to the FDA or NOP. If it has a code you can verify it online with the NOP.
Pink Spot has many reasons that they have opted to not produce “organic’’ e-juices. In addition to some of the concerns mentioned above, many of the higher volt e-cigs burn or cancel out “organic’’ flavorings. The shelf life is not nearly as long either, which may not be an issue for some consumers who choose to vape their juice within the first few weeks. But realistically, how many of us have juice sitting on our shelves that is older than a few weeks? Most of the real organic juices that PSV put through R&D did not have the quality of flavor and shelf life that measured up to the Pink Spot standards and thus they’ve never claimed to produce “organic’’ juice. Pink Spot juice is American made and they prioritize and value the quality of ingredients used. American made has always meant something in this industry, and PSV feels strongly that it means something with our product as well. All our juices are third party tested. Every flavor with its ingredients/components are tested by a third-party lab to be Diacetyl and Acetyl Propionyl free. What does this mean for you? It means you are getting the safest e-juice using the safest ingredients available to us. This also means that we are taking precautions for the upcoming FDA regulations. These test results are available for all of our flavors at PSV. All our bottles are tamper-proof and have child resistant droppers. Another reason we believe our juice is set apart from the rest is the use of quality containers. The LDPE Chemical Grade bottles are resistant to VG leaching. All of our disposables, 12ml and 30ml bottles come with labeling that clearly lists the ingredients used in the creation of the product and a warning label. In part this is due to our readiness to comply with the FDA as new regulations emerge. And finally, each bottle is mixed only when we order it to ensure freshness and safety! When the product arrives you will know it has not been tampered with, and you can store it with the added peace of mind that you are getting the safest e-liquid possible.