On the eve of a flavoured vaping products ban, Imperial Tobacco Canada asks the Quebec government for a concrete plan to counter the inevitable result: an increase in the illicit trade of flavoured vaping products.
MONTREAL, Oct. 30, 2023 /CNW/ - Today marks the last day for adult vapers to purchase legal flavored vaping products in Quebec. Starting tomorrow, it will be illegal for retailers to sell flavored vaping products in the province (with the exception of unflavored and tobacco-flavoured products). Imperial Tobacco Canada (ITCAN) is calling on the government to ensure compliance with its new regulations by creating an ACCES Vapotage program.
"The Quebec government has stated that the flavour ban is intended to reduce the appeal of vaping products to minors. We have always agreed that young people should neither smoke nor vape. We also agree with the many laws in place prohibiting the sale of these products to minors," said Eric Gagnon, Vice President, Legal and External Affairs at ITCAN. "What we disagree with is this unilateral approach. It will undoubtedly have negative impacts on adult vapers looking for a less harmful alternative to cigarettes, while enriching the illegal market."
In 2020, Nova Scotia became the first Canadian province to ban flavours in vaping products to reduce youth consumption. A 2021 investigation by the Vaping Industry Trade Association found widespread noncompliance following the imposition of the flavour ban. That Province has also seized large volumes of illegal vaping liquid. "This suggests that prohibition is not working. The regulations have shifted the sale of these products to the illegal market where they are unregulated and where the laws in place to prevent sales to minors are completely ignored," said Gagnon.
There is a precedent for enforcement. The Quebec government set up the ACCES Tabac and ACCES Cannabis programs to enforce fines, conduct investigations, and seize product in connection with the illegal tobacco and cannabis markets.
"These initiatives work. We hope that the Quebec government establishes something similar for flavoured vapour products. At the very least, the government should take steps to enforce the new regulations and apply the necessary sanctions to merchants who break the law," concludes Gagnon.
Imperial Tobacco Canada is Canada's leading tobacco and vaping products company and is part of the world's most international tobacco group: BAT. BAT is a global multi-category consumer goods business, operating in over 180 markets. Our vision is to build A Better Tomorrowtm by reducing the health impact of our business through offering a greater choice of enjoyable and less risky products for our consumers.
Our strong foundations, together with our capacity for cutting-edge innovation, are a platform for us to build more sustainable products for our adult consumers, and a more sustainable business for our colleagues, shareholders, and communities.
SOURCE Imperial Tobacco Canada