Vaping News

2022 - Fun in the Summertime Sun

Over Christmas we look back at our busy year with hundreds of news stories covered, now heading into a summer containing a landmark birthday, reports and more concern about disposables

Share on:
2022 has been another busy year in the world of vape as tobacco harm reduction has become cemented in the UK’s approach to reducing the damage caused by smoking. The same can’t be said of other nations. Our award-winning reporting has covered strip searches, ground-breaking research, political dithering, and industrious advocates. With summer finally here, we warned holiday makers of potential problems and celebrated a landmark birthday.

Planet of the Vapes began life ten years ago as Gaining immediate traction with our friendly and welcoming forum, POTV went on to become a cornerstone of the UK vaping community.

Our tenth birthday was celebrated with a mahoosive giveaway, the like of which had never been seen in the UK vape community before. We looked back over a decade of change and ten years’ worth of news, content that has culminated in a number of awards. POTV News now helps to generate over 2-million-page hits per month and has a 60,000+ newsletter subscriber list – incredible figures.

The hot topic this quarter confirmed the rumblings from meetings throughout 2022. POTV had been hearing that the news wouldn’t be positive when it came to teen vaping and ASH finally released an update.

The ASH/Cancer Research UK briefing showed a disturbing rise in underage use. Deborah Arnott, ASH’s Chief Executive said: “The disposable vapes that have surged in popularity over the last year are brightly coloured pocket-sized products with sweet flavours and sweet names, and are widely available for under a fiver, no wonder they’re attractive to children.”

ASH did add: “The proportion of young people who vape has increased, but media reports that youth vaping risks becoming a potential ‘public health catastrophe’ leading to a ‘generation hooked on nicotine’ 3 are not substantiated by the evidence.”

Ann McNeill, the person responsible for the government evidence update reports said: “The rise in vaping is concerning and we need to understand what lies behind this such as packaging, accessibility, taste or addictiveness. Our response must be proportionate given that smoking is a much bigger risk to the health of young people and the good evidence that e-cigarettes can be an effective stop smoking aid.

“Government should ensure existing laws are enforced and identify where regulations could be extended. However, this must be done alongside securing a much quicker decline in young people taking up smoking and helping more smokers to stop.”

Online age verification service provider 1Account noted that the major issue is not online purchasing driving the trend but illicit in-store sales and suggested that this is where the government should focus its energy.

The New Nicotine Alliance welcomed the new Action on Smoking and Health briefing, saying: “The UK is a global leader in recognising the benefits of reduced risk products such as e-cigarettes to help smokers to quit, and we are pleased that ASH has reacted to recent negativity in the news with a calm and balanced set of evidence-based guidelines for local authorities to follow.”

Based on this research, Action on Smoking and Health went on to produce a guidance document for schools and parents to provide education and to support the implementation of evidence-based school policies.

Such contributions stand in contrast to the wealth of misinformation constantly being punted out by ideologically or economically driven sources. Researchers at the Universities of Bath and Bristol looked at the impact of misinformation

The team concluded: “These findings are the first to demonstrate that, compared to harm reduction information, conflicting information increases e-cigarette harm perceptions amongst vapers, and smokers who do not vape.”

Examples of such misinformation was easy to come by. The World Health Organisation produced one in its Questions and Answers document, described as “an absolute scandal” by The Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates.

Another example was provided by Dr Galiatsatos and TV celebrity Dr Sara Kayat who both claimed that vaping causes ‘popcorn lung’. POTV complained to ITV and the General Medical Council about Dr Kayat’s comments but neither though lying to the public was an issue worth acting upon.

Another report demonstrated the reduced risk posed by vaping on the cardiovascular system compared to smoking, and misinformation about oral health was addressed by presenting facts directly to dentists.

Time and time again, commentators overseas pointed to the sterling work being done in the United Kingdom. “There are important lessons U.S. policymakers can learn from the tax and regulatory environment in the U.K.,” said a Pacific Research Institute report.

While the U.K. imposes taxes and regulations based on the relative risk of vaping versus smoking, the U.S. approach focuses on the absolute risks of vaping products alone. Preventing new products denies the ability of people to try new products that could improve their lives or reduce their relative risks. There are risks from vaping, but they are significantly lower compared with smoking.”

This is important as not only does what is taking place abroad risk influencing some of our politicians, but it can hold dire consequences at this time of year when visiting those places on holiday.

POTV reported Vape Club Dan Marchant’s warning about the possibility of fines when overseas and we compiled a comprehensive list of places where vaping is legal, problematic and completely banned.

Elsewhere, vaping was doing its bit to help Ukraine in the war against Russia as PhD student Maksym Sheremet and his organisation Drone Lab were repurposing the lithium-ion batteries from disposable vapes to power 100 drone dropping systems with another 100 in progress and 2,000 orders in the pipeline.

Disposables continued to be placed under scrutiny across the summer with a report detailing how most of the valuable lithium is finding its way into landfill sites instead of being recycled. A further study by Waste Management magazine confirmed the situation and said more needs to be done about it.

AYR suggested that this could be achieved by creating “better, safer, smarter, and more sustainable vaping products” and demonstrated this with the release of its new smart system. ElfBar continued to ignore an environmentally sustainable approach by joining Geek Bar in attacking counterfeit devices and launching the no-expense spared social media hashtag #SayNoToFakeELFBAR.

An investigation by The Observer newspaper found the “Chinese-owned brand Elf Bar is fuelling the boom in e-cigarettes among young people as social media influencers on TikTok promote its goods in an apparent breach of advertising rules.”

At a wider level, Arcus Compliance expressed concern about the number of vape businesses operating with a lack of regulatory awareness, saying: “If companies are operating in this market and don’t know what’s in their products, they should pull out.”

One business that certainly appears to know its onions is Supreme PLC as it added Cuts Ice Limited and Flavour Core Limited to its portfolio alongside Liberty Flights. As Autumn ended it was clear that the days of the small-to-medium independent vape companies are almost over. Bar niche products, it seems as though we are now entering the merger and acquisition phase where Big Vape is dominating every aspect of the ecig market.

Photo Credit:

Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
View Articles

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.

Join the discussion

Vaping News

CAPHRA Highlights Tobacco Control Flaws

The Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates highlights the flaws in tobacco control which has led to the rise of black market in Australia

Vaping News

Come To GFN24!

Everyone is going to be welcome at #GFN24 as organisers say it will be an “antidote” to clandestine WHO COP10 and its meetings behind closed doors

Vaping News

CAPHRA Repeats Call For Transparency

Consumer body CAPHRA has repeated calls for greater transparency and engagement from World Health Organisation Framework Convention on Tobacco Control officials

Vaping News

French Plans Will Push People To Smoke

The French government’s nicotine and tobacco policy risks pushing people towards cigarettes says a consumer advocacy organisation