Why Brexit Is Great News for the Vaping Industry

Why Brexit Is Great News for the Vaping Industry

Whether the UK leaves the EU with a deal or no deal on 31 October 2019, there’s no doubt that Brexit will affect a great deal of businesses in the UK, but what consequences will it have for the vaping industry? In this post, we will try to answer the question on the minds of many wholesale e-liquid manufacturers, suppliers and retailers: “Will Brexit be good for the vaping industry?”

The pre-Brexit
vaping industry

UK vaping products are currently regulated under the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016 (TRPR) – the UK’s implementation of the EU Tobacco Products Directive. Among other regulations under the TRPR, it states that:

  • Bottles of nicotine-containing e-liquid
    must not exceed 10ml;
  • Disposable e-cigarettes, single use
    cartridges or tanks must not exceed 2ml in volume;
  • E-liquids must not include ingredients
    (except for nicotine) which pose a risk to human health in a heated or
    unheated form;
  • Nicotine strength in nicotine-containing
    e-liquid is restricted to a maximum of 20mg/ml;
  • All nicotine containing e-liquids have
    to be notified with the MHRA before they can be sold.

There are also strict packaging and labelling
guidelines and restrictions on the advertising of vape products.

On top of the TRPR, it is
illegal in the UK:

  • for retailers to sell electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) or e-liquids
    to someone under 18; or
  • for adults to buy (or try to buy) tobacco products or e-cigarettes for
    someone under 18.

While many of these laws and regulations make sense, particularly the safety and age restrictions, and should be kept post-Brexit, our split from the EU does give the UK an opportunity to revise some policies to align better with both the government and the NHS’s long-term plans to encourage smokers to quit smoking.

The vaping
industry post-Brexit

Brexit will undoubtably bring about reviews of UK laws and regulations which were previously imposed by being members of the EU. This presents the UK with a valuable chance to rethink some of its policies which affect various aspects of our lives – the policy on vaping being one.

It’s clear the direction the government wants our regulation to take – in short, less smoking and a greater acceptance of the use of e-cigarettes as a quit smoking aid.

Taken from the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee E-cigarette report 2017-19:

“Some aspects of the regulatory system for e-cigarettes appear to be holding back their use as a stop smoking measure. The limit on the strength of refills means that some users have to puff harder to get the nicotine they seek and may put some heavy smokers off persisting with e-cigarettes.

The tank size restriction does not seem to be founded on any
scientific rationale. A prohibition on making claims for the relative health
benefits of switching to e-cigarettes from conventional cigarettes means that
some who might switch are not getting that message.

A ban on advertising “tobacco” products, has prevented manufacturers putting “pack insert” information about e-cigarettes in cigarette cartons. The Government, together with the ASA and the MHRA, should review all these regulatory anomalies and, to the extent that EU directives do not present barriers, publish a plan for addressing these in the next annual Tobacco Control Plan. (Paragraph 81)

12. The level of taxation on smoking-related products should directly correspond to the health risks that they present, to encourage less harmful consumption. Applying that logic, e-cigarettes should remain the least-taxed and conventional cigarettes the most, with heat-not-burn products falling between the two. (Paragraph 82)

13. The Government should conduct a review of regulations on e-cigarettes and novel tobacco products which are currently applied under EU legislation, to identify scope for change post-Brexit, including an evidence-based review of the case for discontinuing the ban on “snus” oral tobacco. This should be part of a wider shift to a more risk-proportionate regulatory environment; where regulations, advertising rules and tax/duties reflect the evidence on the relative harms of the various e-cigarette and tobacco products available. While an evidence-based approach is important in its own right, it also may help bring forward the behaviours that we want as a society-less smoking, and greater use and acceptance of e-cigarettes and novel tobacco products if that serves to reduce smoking rates. (Paragraph 83)

The government accepted all the recommendations and its response
to the last recommendation from the committee shows its position clearly. The
government stated:

“The Government accepts this recommendation. We have committed in the Tobacco Control Plan to review where the UK’s exit from the European Union offers us opportunities to re-appraise current regulation to ensure this continues to protect the nation’s health.

We will look to identify where we can sensibly deregulate without harming public health or where current EU regulations limit our ability to deal with tobacco. The Government’s goal will remain to achieve a proportionate approach to managing risk, one which protects the young and non-smokers, whilst giving smokers access to products which will reduce harm.

As part of this the Government will consider reviewing the position on snus and whether the introduction of this product onto the UK market would promote that kind of proportionate harm reduction approach.

From its response to the recommendations, the direction government policy post-Brexit is clear – a more proportionate regulation of e-cigarettes which promotes a greater acceptance of e-cigarette usage while maintaining the same level of protection for vapers, the young and non-smokers.

As more and more evidence mounts that vaping is safer than both heat-not-burn products and smoking and is one of the best ways to quit smoking, it looks like wholesale bottled e-liquid manufacturers, suppliers and retailers are in the right industry at the right time. In a way, we are all joining in the governmen’s smoke-free vision and making the world a healthier place.

Ecig Vapers
is a leading UK wholesale e-liquid manufacturer and OEM white
label specialist.
Register now to be one of our e-liquid
stockists and enjoy an extensive range of premium UK wholesale e-liquids at
unbeatable prices.

If you are looking to create your own brand of e-liquids, we also offer a full idea-to-shelf OEM white label service at no extra cost. Contact us now and we’ll be happy to discuss your requirements.


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