It’s believed that of the almost 3million vapers in the UK, 56% of us voted to leave the European Union.
Now we’re out, what does that mean for the average vaper and where do we stand on the controversial EU legislation known collectively as the TPD?
In a nutshell in this post Brexit Britain, not a lot – if anything – will change in the short term as vaping is way down the list of any negotiations between us and the EU bureaucrats.
Indeed as we haven’t even pushed the button to leave most things will stay the same for at least 2 years – including the £350million we send to Brussels every week.
So let’s look a little deeper into the TPD or the Tobacco Products Directive.
What is TPD?
The TPD is an EU directive that governs the sale, manufacture and advertising of all tobacco and tobacco related products.
Ignorant EU ‘officials’ have lumped e-cigarettes and e-liquids into this mess despite the fact we know they have zero tobacco in them!
The new laws around e-cigs and vaping came into force in May of this year and are formally known as Article 20 of the TPD.
Swingeing cuts to the rights of vapers – vaping manufactures and vape stores have meant among others:
- The ban of advertising e-cig products
- Restrictions on vaping in public places
- Huge taxes added to e-cig products
- E-liquids to be sold only in 10ml bottles
- 20mg max nicotine strength
- Ban on variable voltage or wattage mods
- Leak free filling
- Huge warnings on all equipment
- E-cig products regulated as ‘medicines’
It’s little wonder pressure and campaign groups fighting these ridiculous ‘rules’ have grown in size and strength as vapers unite to fight what really is seen as a punishment backed by big tobacco companies and their slippery lobbyists.
Apart from Vapers in Power there’s a relatively new organization out there promoting and supporting tobacco harm reduction.
The NNA strongly advocates vaping as a sure fire method to give up smoking.
They campaign in all areas of health and tobacco and offer information, support and advice to consumers, health authorities, companies and the Government.
As a group they strongly oppose the TPD and are leading a vociferous campaign to see it blown away from the UK shores.
“Vaping is at least 95% less risky than smoking.
No credible expert disagrees that vaping (using e-cigarettes) is less risky than smoking.
This is because the harm from smoking tobacco arises from the fact that the tobacco in a cigarette is being burnt producing some 4,000 chemicals, many of which are carcinogenic.
E-cigarettes heat a mixture of three major ingredients – propylene glycol or vegetable glycerine, and nicotine, plus flavourings.
When heated, these form an aerosol that is inhaled by the user. There is no combustion involved.
A recent landmark report relying on 185 studies and produced by Public Health England concluded that vaping is 95% less risky than smoking tobacco.”
Good guys indeed.
So is Brexit Good for Vapers?
As I said at the start of this piece, the simple answer is ‘we don’t know.’
However judging from many laws surrounding tobacco and similar products adopted in the past, it’s felt highly unlikely the UK will remove the TPD Article 20 legislation.
Any good information on post Brexit vaping is limited to say the least. Most people are more concerned about a rise in the cost of their summer holidays and if they’ll still have a job than to worry about us vapers.
This sobering news will no doubt leave a sour taste in the mouth of many vapers – call it EU tongue rather than Vapers Tongue if you like.
However given there’s close to 3million of us now, it might pay for politicians to keep a very close eye on our campaigns and lobbying.
So get involved – the British people have blown a dark cloud over the EU already this year, so let’s keep up the pressure and fight for our right to vape!!!