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Ban on disposable vapes due to concerns about children's health

  • 2 Min To Read
  • 5 months ago

The UK government has announced plans to ban disposable vapes in an effort to combat the increasing number of young people taking up vaping. The proposed measures also aim to restrict the marketing of vapes to children and target under-age sales. While the ban is already in place for selling vapes to those under 18, disposable vapes, which are often sold in more colorful packaging, have been identified as a significant factor behind the rise in youth vaping. According to figures from the Action on Smoking and Health (Ash) charity, 7.6% of 11 to 17-year-olds now regularly or occasionally vape, up from 4.1% in 2020.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak emphasized the importance of taking "strong action" to prevent children from vaping, citing concerns about addiction and the long-term health impacts. However, the UK Vaping Industry Association argued that vapes have helped millions of adults quit smoking and expressed concerns that the ban would increase the risk of a black market for vapes.

The proposed ban on disposable vapes is part of a broader set of changes. The government plans to introduce powers to prevent the sale of flavored refillable vapes marketed at children and require plainer packaging for these products. Retailers will also be required to display refillable vapes out of sight of children. A public consultation will be conducted to determine which flavors should be banned and how refillable vapes should be sold.

The ban on disposable vapes is expected to be implemented across the UK, with Scotland and Wales expressing their support for the measures. Northern Ireland, which currently lacks a devolved administration, aims to become tobacco-free and will make preparations for a decision on the ban.

While some argue that the UK's plans do not go far enough, with calls for a tax on e-cigarettes and prescription-only access like in Australia, the government believes that the proposed measures strike the right balance between restricting access for children and providing alternatives for adult smokers trying to quit. Vaping is considered less harmful than smoking, but its long-term risks are still not fully understood.

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