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November 24, 2014

Target Field vaporizes use of e-cigarettes

Target Field is pulling the plug on the use of electronic cigarettes, WCCO-TV reports.

The devices — also known as e-cigarettes — have a battery-powered element that emits vapor rather than smoke. The devices use liquids that mostly contain nicotine, which comes from tobacco.

And while e-cigarettes are not restricted by the Minnesota Clean Indoor Air Act, many businesses  have banned the use of them. In addition, Hennepin County banned the use of e-cigarettes last month.

The Minnesota Twins’ senior director of communications, Kevin Smith, says the team has been considering the ban of e-cigarettes for some time, and because of the “proliferation” of them, “we want to make it crystal clear that Target Field is a non-smoking venue of any kind.

Bloomberg reports that U.S. consumers will spend $1 billion on e-cigarettes this year, quadrupling the amount spent on the devices four years ago.

While some fans are applauding the move by the Twins and Target Field, a Twin Cities shop owner says people don’t understand how e-cigarettes work.

Uptown Vapor Shoppe owner Sina War says the may look and feel like smoking, but the best way to describe the use of the e-cigarettes is “vaping, because it’s vapor.”

The use of e-cigarettes has been viewed by some as a new means to quit smoking since Minnesota’s new cigarette tax went into effect July 1.

According to Bloomberg, the Food and Drug Administration has indicated that it might start regulating e-cigarettes in the fall. The publication said while the devices are less harmful than traditional cigarettes, the nicotine solutions they use have been found to contain “carcinogenic nitrosamines and other harmful impurities derived from the tobacco, as well as the additive diethylene glycol, an ingredient in antifreeze.”

The uncertainty was one of the concerns Hennepin County had in implementing its ban, county administrator David Hough told Fox 9 last month.

“The FDA has not weighed in on whether or not it’s a smoking cessation device or the health implications,” Hough said.

See WCCO’s report on the Target Field ban of e-cigarettes below.

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