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Ecig TPD Outrage

The implementation of the Tobacco Products Directive was met with outrage.

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Ever ready to hunt out a bandwagon to leap on, British tabloids sought to benefit from the controversy surrounding the Tobacco Products Directive (TPD). The implementation of the directive drew condemnation from many quarters and even registered on the radars of small local media outlets.

“Nanny State has GONE TOO FAR,” raged the Daily Express, ever one to pick a fight with Europe, as 2.6-million vapers and countless vape businesses faced ridiculous legislation. It was possibly the limpest coverage given that the entire feature ended up focussing on traditional tobacco products with just a passing mention to limits being placed on the strength and size of eliquid bottles. Maybe the Nanny State didn’t tell the journalist what he ought to be getting upset about.

The same doesn’t apply to The Register. “Draconian new regulations on vaping come into effect today,” they wrote, “but for many vapers, it won’t feel like a crackdown, at least, not right away.” And they are correct, apart from changes to discount codes, bulk buy deals and advertising in UK-based media we won’t notice the biggest changes till next February.

In an article that firmly hits the nail on the head when it says: “The EU’s TPD is a sophisticated Denial of Service attack on [the vaping] consumer market.” It continues: “The restrictions on promotion will also have some perverse consequences. Since ‘promotion’ of the products is now illegal, bloggers and YouTube vloggers have been advised not to enthuse too much about the kit they review – and to be on the safe side, not mention the price.”

They point out that the impact on juice producers is far less than were originally feared. Fees for testing of £150 per batch appear almost charitable when compared to the €4,000 the Belgium regulating agency is charging, but prices to consumers are clearly set to rise.

It matters little to Brett Horth of Vapouriz in Guildford. “Because it contains nicotine, it has been ... deemed to fall under a tobacco product. But potatoes contain nicotine, as do tomatoes, and are they a tobacco product? They're not, no,” he told his local rag. "But I do agree that the industry does need to be regulated, there are many people just making up e-liquids, for example, in their kitchen, and there does need to be regulation to protect the consumer."

But how has the industry has grown to date? Many of our larger independent juice makers began by selling liquids they originally made for friends. As long as there is clarity over the production process there is yet to be a single piece of evidence documenting a danger present in a homemade juice that is absent in a factory produced one.

Even The Mirror’s Jasper Hammil tried to pen something supportive, even if they did link to his other articles like “I vaped my Dad’s wee” and scintillating ecig articles. “British vapers unite behind Lord's bid to THROW OUT controversial EU e-cigarette laws,” he wrote. And they have. Tens of thousands of vapers have signed the petition supporting Lord Callanan’s motion to the House of Lords. As of today, thanks to vendors lending their support and encouragement, there are almost 45,000 signatures. Please consider lending yours as well but do not forget to write a letter too.

Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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