FILE. (The Associated Press)

Rules on nicotine content, advertising, flavours for vaping come into effect in B.C.

Previously announced measures aimed at reducing vaping among youth

The province announced Monday (July 20) that strict regulations for vaping will come into effect for immediately.

The rules, some of which have been previously announced in November, include limiting nicotine to 20 milligrams/millilitre. Health Minister Adrian Dix said that amount would bring nicotine content per pod to the amount in 20 cigarettes, which would match European Union standards. Dix said the EU has done a better job of controlling vaping among young people.

Vaping products in B.C. are not allowed to be sold to youth under the age of 19, however, Dix said there has been an “exponential growth in their use” among young people.

He blamed an “aggressive campaign over time to promote vaping products among youth,” noting that youth vaping is linked to a sevenfold increase in the chances of smoking cigarettes as an adult.

Education Minister Rob Fleming said vaping companies “disguise toxins with harmless sounding flavours like cotton candy.”

The sale of non-tobacco flavours will be restricted to adult-only stores, while all vaping products will have plain packaging with health warnings on them. New stores will have to bring in these changes immediately while existing retailers will have until Sept. 15.

Advertising for vaping products will also be restricted in areas where youth spend significant time, including at bus stops and in malls.

Dix said the rules were meant to go into effect at the end of March but the province chose to delay to focus on the COVID-19 pandemic. The provincial tax on vaping products was increased to 20 per cent on Jan. 1.

“This is a necessary public health step to protect young people from vaping,” Dix said.

In addition, Fleming said the province’s plans include a youth-led anti-vaping social media campaign was launched in February. Dubbed the “evaporate” campaign,” the province said it’s garnered over 27 million digital impressions.

When Dix asked if there were worries about increased regulations sparking a black market, the health minister said people under the age of 18 are already buying vaping products, and the nicotine requirements will hopefully make them less potent.

“It is not allowed now but has occurred nonetheless,” he said.

However, the province’s new regulations came under fire from the Convenience Industry Council of Canada, a group that represents convenience stores in the country.

The council said the rules were misguided and “dangerous public policy.”

“All the available evidence shows that convenience stores outperform specialty retail shops in the responsible retailing of age-restricted products,” the council said in a statement. It cited a Centre for Addiction and Mental Health report released in 2019 that showed convenience stores were among “the least common source of vaping products for youth,” although the study was carried out in Ontario.

READ MORE: B.C. to restrict nicotine content, bring in 20% tax on vaping products


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

vaping

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kelowna’s Sutherland Salvation Army thrift store closes permanently

The location has been facing challenges amid COVID-19

Local state of emergency declared at Penticton home

Slope failure cited as city issues notice at home in 600 block of Heather Road

QUIZ: Do you know the truth?

In what has been described as a post-truth era, how much do you know about truth and lies?

EDITORIAL: Managing wildfires

Wildfires have the potential to cause significant damage within our province

53 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths cap off week of high infection rates in B.C.

Roughly 1,500 people are self-isolating because they either have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it

Simon Cowell breaks his back falling from electric bike

Incident happened at his home in California

Therapeutic art for sale at Okanagan show

17th annual Awakening the Spirit Art Show and Sale presented by Vernon Canadian Mental Health Assoc.

VIDEO: Internet famous Yukon-based bhangra dancer explores Vancouver Island

Gurdeep Pandher spreads joy through dance, forms cross-cultural connections amid pandemic

Tech mogul growing North Okanagan’s wine industry

The founder of online dating site Plenty of Fish is developing 900 acres in Vernon

Fentanyl-laced powder being sold as cocaine in Kamloops

Interior Health has released a warning about very strong fentanyl in Kamloops

Unofficial holidays: the weird and wonderful things people celebrate around the world

On any given day of the year, there are several strange, silly or serious holidays to observe

North Okanagan ranch needs support to stay afloat

Founded in 1867, a fundraiser has been launched for the Historic O’Keefe Ranch

Video: Enraged man terrifies staff and customers at Shuswap restaurant

Video on Facebook shows the man hurling profanity at workers during the dinner rush on Aug. 7.

Most Read