Public Warned Against Marijuana-Flavored Vapes and the Risks They Pose

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The Dangers of Marijuana-Laced E-cigarettes

The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) has recently issued a warning to the public regarding the use of electronic cigarettes, particularly those infused with marijuana oil. This caution comes in response to a significant increase in the availability of vaping products containing cannabis extracts.

In a recent operation, the PDEA, along with other law enforcement agencies, seized cannabis oil, marijuana kush, and various vaping products worth a total of P842,000 in Taguig City. This confiscation follows another significant interception by the PDEA and the Bureau of Customs, where 18 boxes of e-cigarettes containing cannabis oil and marijuana kush, valued at P337 million, were discovered in the Port Area of Manila.

The PDEA emphasizes that the public should refrain from patronizing marijuana-laced e-cigarettes due to the health hazards they pose. Additionally, it is crucial to note that the law explicitly prohibits the use and distribution of such products. The agency further warns that the proliferation of these illicit items could inadvertently expose unsuspecting customers to marijuana addiction.

The demand for marijuana oil cartridges, as evidenced by the selling and smuggling activities, is a cause for concern. Of particular worry is the fact that the vaping culture is predominantly popular among the youth. The PDEA is wary that cannabis extracts could be passed off as legitimate vape aerosols in the market and sold to younger patrons. This underscores the urgent need for tighter monitoring of both physical and online vape shops that sell marijuana-flavored e-cigarettes.

Recognizing the importance of collaborative efforts, the PDEA calls on other government regulators to join forces in ensuring the effective regulation of these products. By working together, they can strengthen the monitoring and enforcement of laws related to the sale and distribution of marijuana-infused e-cigarettes.

This issue is not limited to the PDEA’s concerns alone. In January, Health Secretary Teodoro Herbosa urged the Philippine National Police to take measures to prevent teenagers from accessing vapes. Such actions are necessary to protect the youth from the potential dangers associated with vaping and to ensure their overall well-being.

It is crucial to understand that the sale or distribution of tobacco products within 100 meters of schools, public playgrounds, or other areas where minors may be present is strictly prohibited by Republic Act 9211 (Tobacco Regulation Act of 2003) and Executive Order 106 issued by President Rodrigo Duterte. These regulations are in place to safeguard the health and welfare of young individuals and to prevent them from being exposed to harmful substances.

In conclusion, the PDEA’s warning serves as a timely reminder of the risks associated with marijuana-laced e-cigarettes. The agency’s efforts, along with the support of other government regulators, are crucial in protecting the public, especially the youth, from the potential dangers of these products. By remaining vigilant and enforcing existing laws, we can ensure a safer environment for all.

Source: The Manila Times

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