The first meeting of the CSFO, held in a Howard Johnson conference room two sizes too small, asked only two things of those in attendance: “be on time and set aside any differences for the larger cause.” The ask was simple. Accomplishing it was no small feat.
MEET THE CALIFORNIA SMOKE FREE ORGANIZATION.
Their mission is simple:
To keep the vapor markets competitive for both small and big players, to ensure the long-term viability of the industry, to defeat bills that stifle innovation critical to public health, and to transform the public debate on electronic cigarettes aka vapor products. Additionally, to influence the language of new bills while in formation forging new relationships with public and state elected officials.
Basically, given the radically disruptive nature of the Vapor Industry to the status quo, someone needs to be at the helm, helping to shape the discussion. That someone is actually a group of people, The California Smoke Free
California’s Vaping Industry generates more than one billion dollars every other month. That’s billion with a capital
B. California’s industry is responsible for approximately 40% of the world’s Vapor Industry. That’s why a year ago, while legislators clamored to regulate and tax the industry – a sobering realization came about: who speaks for California’s industry? Just as our Founding Fathers before, industry leaders could not simply stand by and accept taxation without representation.
That’s when Chris Jimenez, currently serving as the organization’s Secretary, reached out to the leaders of
the world’s most prominent companies based in California and spearheaded the formation of a non-profit trade association – The California Smoke Free Organization. Quick to step up to the task ahead were many decision makers of companies synonymous with vaping itself: Founding Members include Vapor Beast, Charlie’s Chalk Dust, Space Jam, Marina Vape, E-Cig Distributors, Vapor Shark, Cosmic Fog, Vapor DNA, Kilo, Propaganda, Saveur, Asmodus, ISM and many, many more. And there was much work to do.
The CSFO has raised the funds necessary to employ some of state’s top lobbyists and legal minds in Sacramento, all
in order to achieve the clear objectives laid out in their mission statement. Since the passage of Prop 56 with its
impending 68% tax, The CSFO has worked closely with the Board of Equalization in defining exactly how the tax will
be implemented. Beyond the state level, the organization has partnered with The VTA for insight and strategy into accomplishing broader, national goals.
Thank you to everyone at Smoke and Vape Business Solutions for this opportunity to share our message. If you
are a California-based company, we encourage you to join us and be heard.
By Patrick Taylor
CALIFORNIA SMOKE FREE ORGANIZATION