Attack on the Vapes! What does it mean for pouches?
Unless you’ve had your head buried in the sand for the last decade – you’ll know vaping has always been a controversial subject.
Recently we’ve seen the focus shift to disposable vapes – and in particular their use among young people. It’s hard not to read the news and not see some sort of article about the ‘dangers’ of vaping at the moment and there’s a whole debate to be had – we certainly don’t want to see them banned – however, we write about nicotine pouches.
At the Daily Pouch, we support any harm-reducing alternative to combustible cigarettes – but our focus is nicotine pouches – so let’s think a little about how the current media storm affects oral nicotine products. Current attacks focus on two main areas – youth usage and environmental impact. Let’s consider how these arguments impact nicotine pouches.
One of my biggest fears is that a young child gets hold of some strong nicotine pouches, eats a tin full and things end up in the hospital and on the front page of the Daily Mail. Nothing good would come of that.
Something nicotine pouches have going for them in this regard is they’re not particularly ‘cool’.
I remember when I started smoking – I’d be a liar if I didn’t admit it was in part because that’s what you saw the cool kids doing it. Clouds of sweet flavour vapour from an age-restricted product are going to appeal to risk-taking young people in the same way I was drawn to cigarettes.
Nicotine pouches simply don’t have this kind of appeal. Due to their discreet nature, you’d never know someone was using them.
What is important with regard to youth vaping is enforcing the ‘age-restricted’ bit. With vapes in the UK (and worldwide) it’s far too common to see them easily available to young people. When it comes to vapes – in the UK we have this legislation – it’s just poorly enforced.
Now this brings me to an important point about nicotine pouches. In the UK there is no legal age restriction as the product contains no tobacco. Direct-to-consumer routes like those on offer from VELO and Nordic Spirit enforce online age checks – and no doubt so will your local supermarket – however, corner stores and the internet are the Wild West.
One thing we’re doing to address this is as part of my work with Considerate Pouchers – we wrote to the Department of Health and Social Care urging the government to look at the introduction of an age restriction of 18 – in line with similar products.
To recycle nicotine pouches and cans:
– Place nicotine pouch boxes in the recycling bin.
– Depending on the packaging sticker, remove it if necessary before recycling.
– Empty used pouches into the general waste bin.
– Consider using the click-open compartment in nicotine pouch boxes for convenience.
– Wrap used pouches in tissue before putting them in the bin to ensure safety and hygiene.
So let’s hope nicotine pouches don’t get tangled in the current attacks on electronic cigarettes and that we continue to make the necessary distinctions between harm-reduction products.
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