Should Restaurants Ban E-Cigarettes?

Categories: Food News

woman-e-cigarette.jpg
michaeldorausch.com
You'd eat a burger sitting next to her.
There's a crackdown on e-cigarettes in the works. While the health risks of pulling on a battery-powered nicotine stick are still unknown, policy makers are moving to regulate them. The U.S Department of Transportation has already grounded e-cigarettes on airplanes and Amtrak won't let them on trains, either.

E-cigarettes were first introduced as a tool to help traditional smokers quit, but many just became electronic smokers. And now that now children are picking up e-cigarettes with more frequency, officials are taking a closer look at what was once considered harmless. New Yorkers, having endured more bans and attempted bans than anyone should have to endure, are using a recent passenger train e-cigarette ban to fuel the question: Should e-cigarettes be banned in restaurants?

According to a survey on CNN's Etocracy, almost 60 percent of readers are fine with e-cigarettes at the table, but some area restaurant professionals disagree. Businessweek called several restaurateurs and chefs to ask about e-cigarette policies and heard everything from "I'm happy to have them" to "we do not allow them indoors or outdoors." None of the chefs seem enamored with them, though, calling them tacky and weird.

Posing the same question to Dallas restaurants yielded similar inconsistencies. "We don't allow it," said a hostess at Stephan Pyles, before adding, "This is a five star restaurant." A hostess at Abacus, on the other hand, said there is no policy and that she'd seen them used in the dining room.

E-cigs had only been spotted twice at the bar at Al Biernat, not once in the dining room at Bijoux and "only a couple times" at Oak. With respect to fine dining in Dallas, there seems to be few hardened rules simply because diners haven't been trying to "light up" while they dine.

Still, e-cigarettes are a relatively new phenomenon, and "vape shops" are popping up with increased frequency. Twice as many school kids smoked e-cigarettes last year as they did the year before, according to the CDC, and eventually those kids are going to end up in a dining room with you.

Most of the chefs and restaurant employees seemed permissive of the habit as long as long as it wasn't a distraction or an inconvenience to the other guests. But with e-cigarette use climbing, the potential for distraction is more likely. What if a restaurant was half-filled with nicotine users, puffing apricot-flavored vapor clouds while they ate? Would it be a distraction then?

We may find out soon.


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29 comments
tired_of_the_nons
tired_of_the_nons

I am a smoker and don't mind not smoking in public places.  But if you are going to ban e-cigs, I'll have to start farting in restaurants just as a protest - try to ban that.

primi_timpano
primi_timpano topcommenter

Ban them? No. Especially now that the THC varieties are coming to market.

MattL11
MattL11

Should restaurants ban e-cigarettes? Sure, if they want to.  

edenblue
edenblue

If it is a 5 star restaurant, they will or should be staging the meal so that the customer/ patron does not have excessive down time between courses and therefore should not need to be vaping. If they aren't staging the meal well.. they should lose the 5 star rating... and my money can be spent at any one of dozens of other 5 star restaurants here .

Additionally, the article insinuates people do not gradually lower the nicotine level of the e-cig liquid. I am down from 16 mg. to 3 mg. of nicotine.... I do not do the flavors but no one in my large circle of friends smokes nor has any one of them mentioned an odor from it. In fact, most of us have recommended it to our adult children.. because we want them to give up tobacco too.

I am almost done with smoking the e-cig... I felt better immediately after ceasing cigarettes 18 months ago.. I know I smelled better and that I was able to smell things again, a week later.. and I also know that the e-cig was the easiest, non-stressful way to stop that I have ever found...

Lastly, if children are using them.. I have to wonder about their parents.. are they supervising what their children are doing ... I don't approve of youngsters using them, or smoking pot or doing any sort of drugs.. but I suppose that I would look at the e-cig as a blessing, if it kept teens from regular tobacco and illegal drugs...

ADAMRREESE
ADAMRREESE

It's time to start the crackdown on the e-cig and put them outdoors with all other smoke...as a former smoker, I opted to NOT take up another habit for the other and declined the e-cig.  My senses are 150% back and YES, YOUR E-CIG does smell, not as bad as the cigarette smoke, but it still smells no matter the flavor you chose.  The Medics are still out on this one... soon we will know the health ramifications of vaporizing an unknown liquid and inhaling. Crackdown now.

azimmiza
azimmiza

I think people who wear perfume should NOT be allowed inside a Stephen Pyles restaurant either >:0)    

Seriously folks, if there is no smell or second hand damage done. Leave people alone when there is no harm done, I don't smoke but would not mind. 

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

If I can't smoke, you cant vape.  case closed. problem solved

becoolerifyoudid
becoolerifyoudid

I would prefer if they just smoke weed.  The fragrance is much better.  But then again, people don't ask me my opinion for obvious reasons and I have to resort to going to online comment sections.

connoissaurus
connoissaurus

I think if e-cig users want to avoid hardline bans such as what's proposed here, they should make it their priority to not be annoying and tacky about it. No, I wouldn't vape inside a Stephen Pyles restaurant. Yes, I would vape at the bar in Meddlesome Moth. Just be mindful about it and discreet.

Also, for the bar owners and managers, a study was done that showed e-cig users purchase more drinks than cigarette smokers, since they don't have to go outside all of the time. If you force them outside, you'll not only lose money on their drink purchases, but they eventually may find their way to a different bar that's tolerant of their habit.

kategorical
kategorical

Are the people complaining about it people who know anything about vaping?  I get chefs not wanting other scents coloring their dining experience.  But do we need a law?  Can't restaurants who don't want vapers just make it part of their policy, just like a dress code would be?  I mean, I can't roll into Stephen Pyle's in a bathing suit either, and that's not a law.


jonfromtjs
jonfromtjs

i'm fine with them.  honestly whatever the restaurant is upset about, the money saved by lack of cig breaks for their kitchen staff makes the e-cig the best thing that ever happened to the dinin economy!

Joshstruckoutagain
Joshstruckoutagain

I'd let her blow vape in my face, while sitting on my lap, while eating my burger.

J_A_
J_A_

Ok, so now people are gonna get their panties in a wad about even seeing smoke?! It doesn't smell! Ridiculous

Jamal4
Jamal4

Hell, the butcher at the Kroger near my house hits his right there on the floor.  Not behind the counter- I mean literally when he's out on the floor.  Who gives a shit though?  It's not like it smells.

An0n
An0n

@ADAMRREESE >Unknown Liquid

The juice I mix has about four ingredients in it, and I know what they all are. Therefore, your statement is invalid. Please hang yourself immediately. :)

connoissaurus
connoissaurus

@kategorical It's up to the users to take note of their surroundings and act accordingly. If you're vaping at the dining table in Stephen Pyles, you're probably a douchebag.

dsmallwood06
dsmallwood06

Gross!!!!! That is extremely tacky and unprofessional.

kevin844
kevin844

@ADAMRREESE Um genius, you should do your homework before spouting off. Your "unknown liquid" is made of Pharmaceutical grade nicotine, Vegetable Glycerine (You eat this daily) and polyethylene glycol 400 which you also ingest daily. I mix my own as well. Tell us, what "odor" do you smell? I mix peppermint mostly and the girls I kiss all think I've been eating boat loads of tictacs. So please, enlighten us. 

ADAMRREESE
ADAMRREESE

@An0n

What are the four ingredients oh anonymous one?

Get ready, the FDA is coming on this one, and they will be opening the doors soon.

kategorical
kategorical

@connoissaurus @kategorical 

I wasn't asking to vape in Stephen Pyles, I was merely stating that we don't need to make it illegal to vape in any restaurant for individual restauranteers to make their own policies as they see fit.   

SuzanneV
SuzanneV

@ADAMRREESE Do you have any idea of the toxins in the food you eat and the air you breathe every day?
Sure of a lot more to worry about there...

And people dón't worry about that because not enough people died of it to be 'important'.

Then why the hell should you worry about this?

Chances of you dying in a car crash are much bigger than chances you'll get some kind of illness from inhaling damp from an e-cigarette.

I'll leave you with the advice to enjoy your life and all its 'health risks' while you can. Better have fun than fussing yourself about nothing.

ADAMRREESE
ADAMRREESE

@kevin844
Propylene glycol is the substance that creates the smoke vapor and is used in theatrical applications (also used in oils and is a solvent in industrial form) ; yes, it is used in junk foods (in very small forms) and has been tested on animals for any "problems" that may occur.  The test results state small amounts per day are safe, however, PG is a Toxin.  Toxic effects occur after repeated small dosage and create mutation causing acute toxicity.  The liquid nicotine is also synthetic and is being studied now on the effects it has on the body and our health.  The flavoring liquid, what is it?  The chemicals you ingest through the flavoring should also be identified and studied.  Scent/smell - there is still a "smoke vapor" and a lingering scent.  Some are better than others.  I'm sure your peppermint would likely fall into the 'better" category.   The "natural Marlboro"  stunk just like a Marlboro; other flavors have no scent at all.  It is still a nuisance when you walk into an office, lobby, restaurant and have to walk through puffs of vapor.  The perception is the device is not intrusive, but the reality is most users puff away without thinking about it - if it were a real cigarette, most would at least blow the smoke the other direction. I agree that the e-cig is a healthier alternative to inhaling 4000+ chemical additives that are in the everyday cigarette.  I also know that it is "too soon to tell" what the real effects of the liquid vapor will be.  Those studies are being conducted now.  The real truth is the only safe inhalant for the human body is clean air.

connoissaurus
connoissaurus

@kategorical And I agree, mostly. But if e-cig users don't make it an issue, it won't be an issue! I just ask that we, the users, use common sense, so people don't get "smart" ideas like banning e-cigs inside

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