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Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association Member Code of conduct


as adopted October, 2014



ABSTRACT
The Code of Responsible Conduct is intended to offer vapor products to smoking adults of legal age to purchase responsibly and appropriately.



Founded in 2012, the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA) is the leading and the largest trade association in the personal vapor products industry, representing the supply chain in open and closed systems.

SFATA members are committed to best business practices by promoting responsible business practices and have developed a Code of Advertising, Marketing, Labeling and Sales to provide guidance to all entities involved in the promotion of their respective brands.

The Code of Responsible Conduct is intended to offer vapor products to smoking adults of legal age to purchase responsibly and appropriately. SFATA members voluntarily commit to conducting their Advertising, Marketing, Labeling and Sales in the United States within the guidelines presented in this code and hold themselves to a higher standard than required by regulation or legislation.


Scope

The Code of Responsible Conduct applies to all activities required to advertise, market, sell and label vapor products, including product advertising, consumer communications, promotional events, packaging, labels, sales collateral and distribution.

The Code applies to:

• All print and electronic media, including the Internet and any other on-line communications, including social media, used to advertise or market vapor products.
• Every type of promotional or marketing activity or event, including all product placements (e.g., movies, television programs, music videos, video games) and sponsorships.

Sponsorships are commercial, contractual agreements between a vapor company (the sponsor) and a sponsored party or sponsorship property to support an event, activity, person, or organization financially or through the provision of products or services. A sponsor is the individual or group that provides the support, similar to a benefactor.

SFATA members understand it is not possible to address every eventuality and, therefore, agree to observe the spirit, as well as the letter, of the Code of Responsible Conduct.

Questions about the interpretation of the Code, member companies' compliance with the Code, and the application of its provisions should be directed to SFATA’s Code Review Council.


Code Review Process Framework

The Code of Responsible Conduct is intended to offer vapor products to smoking adults of legal age to purchase responsibly and appropriately.

SFATA members voluntarily commit to conducting their Advertising, Marketing, Labeling and Sales in the United States within the guidelines presented in this code and hold themselves to a higher standard than required by regulation or legislation.

Through the Code of Responsible Conduct, SFATA members also hold their products to a higher standard exemplifying determination and execution of a self-regulatory process.

SFATA’s Code of Responsible Conduct Review Board is the process by which inquiries or complaints regarding all advertising and marketing materials subject to this Code can be reviewed.


No Health, Safety Or Cessation Claims

• While vapor products like e-cigs have the potential to positively impact the public health hazards caused by combustible tobacco cigarettes, SFATA members do not make implicit or explicit health, safety, therapeutic, curative or cessation claims

This provision is not intended to prevent members from pointing to scientific or health studies, or other articles, that discuss or report data on the health effects of vapor products. It is designed to forbid the company from making such a claim, because such a claim would grant the FDA jurisdiction over the member company

• List any package warnings required by state law


Marketing

• Under the law, claims in advertisements must be truthful, cannot be deceptive or unfair, and must be evidence-based
• SFATA members are dedicated to providing a range of quality products to adult smokers as an alternative to combustible tobacco cigarettes
• SFATA members do not market to minors
• Prohibit the use of “child-friendly” or “childish” marketing images, practices or ads
• Products will not be marketed as a “coming of age” product or ritual
• Branded/logoed apparel will be limited to adult sizes


Age Verification Policy For Online And Face-To-Face Purchases

• Online age verification via age confirmation on landing pages or at checkout as required by state law
• Online age verification at checkout executed by a 3rd party and in compliance with any applicable state laws or regulations
• Age verification before completion of face-to-face transactions


Participation in SFATA’s Age to Vape™ Program

• Participation in Age To Vape™, including registering in the Age to Vape™ database and administering any educational material and displaying decals prominently.


Packaging

• Commitment to transition to child-resistant packaging within six months of accepting the Code of Conduct
• Members agree to adhere to guidelines based on the Poison Prevention Packaging Act of 1970 (PPPA) administered by the Consumer Protection Safety Commission or meet ISO 8317:2003 requirements and test methods for re-closable packages designated as resistant to opening by children
• List all ingredients on product packaging/product insert and website


No Trademark Or Other Intellectual Property Infringements

• SFATA members agree to phase to out within 12 months of applying for certification inventory infringing on trademarks, or other intellectual property of third parties.


Deceptive or Derogatory Marketing

• SFATA members agree to maintain reasonable standards in their marketing and not engage in marketing or advertising that would be considered deceptive or defamatory, or creates a negative impression of the vapor industry

• SFATA keeps members abreast of state and federal regulatory issues, serves as a seasoned advocate by successfully engaging government officials on behalf of its members, fosters communication, and engages in meaningful dialogue with the public health community, regulators, and industry stakeholders


Business Practices

• List country of origin on products as required by federal law
• Allow for easy cancellation of auto-ship agreements
• Ensure business name, address and contact information are on all products or inserts and website


Code Review Council

Code Review Council will meet when necessary to consider complaints lodged by SFATA members or other interested parties, including members of the public.

The Code Review Board will comprise no less than five (5) SFATA members in good standing of the SFATA Board of Directors or his/her designee. Each member shall be elected by a majority vote of the Board of Directors and shall serve a one-year term with no limit on terms.

Determinations made by the Code Review Council will be communicated in writing promptly to the responsible company and in specific situations, also to the SFATA Board of Directors.