On April 19, 2021, the U.S. Postal Service released guidance for the e-cigarette and vaping industry that offers a glimpse of some of the current and future logistical challenges. The release is titled “Treatment of E-Cigarettes in the Mail.”
While the title mentions e-cigarettes these concepts and future rules will apply much more broadly to include:
- CBD and hemp products
- THC products
- THC accessories
- Nicotine products
- Advertising and promotional materials
The problem is that the Postal Service has made clear that it will ban a variety of products from the mails when addressed to a residence:
- E-liquid vaping devices
- Oil vaping devices
- Nicotine e-liquids
- Nicotine free e-liquids
- CBD and Delta 8 carts
- Various liquids and oils
- Every related component and part, including batteries
Furthermore, Fedex and UPS announced that they would also stop delivering these products to homes and also to businesses. DHL has already stopped shipping vaping and nicotine products in the U.S.
Taken together these changes have and will create massive logistical problems for smaller, independent companies. While new shipping companies are popping up, time will tell if their number and geographic reach will be enough to protect the smaller players in the industry.
Proposed and Final Rule
Currently there is a proposed rule and there is limited information on exemption applications from this mail ban described in this guidance release.
While there is no final rule yet from the Postal Service it is likely to be released soon.
The Postal Service offered the following information to various segments
For hemp based CBD products containing less than 0.3% THC, mailers must comply with strict documentation requirements to be able to prove their compliance with the Farm Bill and state and local regulations with respect to:
THC Products and Accessories
THC products are generally banned as well as accessories termed “drug paraphernalia.”
Advertisements for Controlled Substances
Advertisements for CS and drug paraphernalia are banned.
Hazardous Materials: Solutions
Solutions may or may not be banned dependent on toxicity and flammability.
Hazardous Materials: Lithium Batteries
Lithium metal or lithium ion batteries may or may not be banned depending on factors cited in Postal Service’s hazardous materials publications.
Mailers of non-hazardous liquids must comply with previous Postal Service publications.
For more information or assistance, please contact:
Chair of the Cannabis Practice