Tobacco Asia

Volume 19, Number 2

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Page 29 of 79

30 tobaccoasia / Issue 2, 2015 (May/June) conceptual thing that people think that anything 'made in the UK' is better than anything made in China." Hangsen follows ISO9001 and GMP pro- duction practices to manage the process with the highest quality standards. Their 40,000 sq.m fac- tory is equipped with the most advanced manufac- turing machines and testing devices to guarantee product consistency and production capacity. Ev- ery Hangsen product, including parts, packaging, and ingredients, goes through at least 10 quality control steps and 5 testing procedures before it is shipped out from the factory. Samuel Lau, vice-president and co-founder of Oplus, one of the newest companies to enter the e-liquid market, said, "The truth is, or how I see it, I think we have very good manufacturers. The safety standards and the quality control standards are good. I visited a few e-liquid manufacturers in the UK, they are nowhere close to the standards that we have in China." "They don't even have the dust-free room, but because it's made in the UK that makes them spe- cial," he continued. "It's quite ironic. Most people think that in China [the production process] is like that in a kitchen factory. This is a fact, people don't really know what's happening in China, they just think that [this is how it is]. "We try to tell people that we want to maintain very high quality standards. We try to prove that it doesn't matter where it's made, it only matters how you make it." Oplus even has a live camera feed on its website that allows viewers to see re- al-time action in its facility, including its +10,000 dust-free workshop. Support for Chinese manufactured e-cigarette hardware and liquids is not limited to only the Chi- nese manufacturers themselves, but also from other stakeholders in the industry. For example, speaking at the CECMOL 2nd E-Cig Forum (see story on the Forum, page 20) in Shenzhen on April 9, 2015, Ron Tully, founder of TNV Ventures LLC and former vice president of new projects and vice president of public affairs at National Tobacco, said: "Most of these devices are actually made in China. They're very good quality devices. There are very good liq- uids coming out of China. In all likelihood there's nothing wrong with Chinese e-liquids but there is a sort of economic bigotry that takes place here in relation to consumer selection." While explaining to the Forum the results of a recent research conducted by his team where 159 sweet flavor liquids from the US and European market were analyzed, Dr. Konstantinos Farsali- nos of the Onassis Cardiac Surgery Center in Ath- ens, Greece, and the University of Patra, Greece, said that 74 of the liquids contained substances that while safe for food use, are toxic when in- haled and can cause respiratory damage. While allowing that Chinese e-liquids also need to be studied, he did mention that, "unfortunately the regulators don't like Chinese products although they have no evidence that they are bad. Or they have evidence from first-generation cigarette-like devices. But, we need this testing and we need tests to evaluate and compare these liquids with US and European liquids." Both Dekang and Hangsen are of the same opinion that established industry standards are key to helping solve this misperception of "made in China" goods. "Products of different quality appear [in the market] because the industrial standards still haven't been published and the standards of each [manufacturer] are different," said Dekang's Zheng. "We hope to have proper, suitable standards which can help the enterprises sustainably produce high- quality, safe products and ensure that consumers can use the products harmlessly. "Dekang, as an important member of China's e-cigarette industry, can contribute to this by set- ting and adhering to high requirements and stan- dards for ourselves, which will also serve as a benchmark to the industry," Zheng said. Hangsen's Yao believes that regulations will also help rule out smaller players who do not meet the standards from the industry. "There are a few DeCloud quality products come in a nice package

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