Saturday, April 13, 2024

New vaping rules blow in from August

The Government is set to introduce new rules around vaping devices sold in New Zealand, in a bid to reduce the number of young people taking up the dangerous habit.

Health Minister, Dr Ayesha Verrall said too many young people were vaping, “which is why we’re making a number of moves to stop that happening”.

From August this year, all vaping devices sold in New Zealand will need to have removeable or replaceable batteries.

“This limits the sale of cheap disposable vapes that are popular among young people,” said Minister Verrall.

“We also want vapes as far from the minds and reach of children and young people as possible, so any locations within 300 metres of schools and marae will be off-limits for new shops.”

Also from August, vapes will also need child safety mechanisms, and potentially enticing names like ‘cotton candy’ and ‘strawberry jelly donut’ will be prohibited.

Only generic names which accurately describe the flavours can be used such as ‘berry’, the Minister confirmed.  

“We recognise we need to strike a balance between preventing young people from starting to vape, at the same time as having vapes available as a cessation tool for those who genuinely want to give up smoking,” she said.

“These new regulations build on protections the Labour Government introduced in 2020, including banning sales to under-18s and prohibiting vape advertising and sponsorship.

“Vaping has played an important role in the record reduction of New Zealanders smoking over the last few years.

“New Zealand’s smoking rate is half the rate of what it was 10 years ago, with the number of people smoking falling by 56,000 in the past year.

“We’re creating a future where tobacco products are no longer addictive, appealing or as readily available, and the same needs to apply to vaping,” said Dr Verrall.

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