Vaping Restrictions before & after Europe

Vaping Restrictions in Europe Pre and Post Brexit


Like it or not we have left Europe. I’m not gonna get into that as it’s a touchy subject but because of this it could mean that the laws we currently adhere to as part of the EU could be readdressed. You maybe thinking wait what are you talking about so here is the short version of events that led to the TPD implementation in 2016.

The TPD

When vaping was establishing itself in the early parts of 2010 to 2020 there were various MPs that were dead against it in the UK. Linda McAvan, the Labour MEP for instance made several attempts to put a stop to the growth of these life saving products but thanks to passionate vapers rallying together and some luck, these attempts never amounted to anything. Vapers were worried very much like those in the United States right now. It seemed like all authorities were against electronic cigarettes.

Roll on a few more years and it became clear there needed to be some regulation to move on. Unfortunately as is often the case and with little to no real consultation with those in the know, vaping was lumped together with combustible tobacco as far as EU law was concerned and the TPD (Tobacco Products Directive) was born. Between 2016 and the May 2017 cut off point all shops had to sell all non compliant products.

During this time The Royal College of Physicians recommended vaping as a safer alternative to combustible cigarettes and stated it is at least 95% safer than smoking in their Nicotine without smoke: Tobacco harm reduction report

This and the work of the likes of what is now the NNA (New Nicotine Alliance) ended up helping the TRPR which is the Tobacco and related Products Regulations essentially a slightly less harsh version of the TPD for Great Britain and Northern Ireland come to pass and is why we have the following laws.

  1. Nicotine containing liquid can only be sold in a 10ml bottle
  2. If a tank is for nicotine consumption it must be 2ml max capacity at point of sale.
  3. No advertising
  4. Nicotine can have a max strength of 2% ie 20mg

There are many other laws but the 4 above are the main ones that do not make any sense. Although the full TPD would have been much worse.

Now you know the history. Why is it a problem?


10ml bottles in 2014 when the laws were being discussed lasted the average vaper about a week. The devices used were less efficient, we had higher nicotine so the consumption of liquid was minimal. If there is virtually no vapour then the liquid is being evaporated slowly and the sub tank was not invented yet.

After the invent of the sub tank consumption went through the roof. People lowered their nicotine level as it became clear it was too harsh when you are using much more liquid per draw. It became normal for people to use 10ml in a day this has led to huge amounts of plastic being wasted.

As nicotine free liquid is not covered by the laws, the industry invented a short filled bottle that you could after purchase add a high nicotine shot, the end result being a larger bottle of nicotine containing liquid. But that’s led to more waste and users handling high strength nicotine and cutting themselves etc getting into bottles

Tanks being 2ml are not practical as some people have to fill them several times a day with some designs only holding a few draws of liquid before the level is too low to use.

Advertising is a problem as it hinders the ability to reach more smokers and spread the word that vaping is saving lives

The maximum level of nicotine is making it harder for really heavy smokers to find something strong enough to satisfy them.

Now we have left the EU.What can we do ?

We need to let our MP know that it’s a problem. If we say nothing they do not know. They are also led by votes, if you tell them you will support them at the next election as well as thousands of other vapers if they support our cause, they will listen.

Contact your MP by searching the link below for their name and email address by inputting your postcode.

https://members.parliament.uk/members/Commons

You will probably get a generic response BUT the more they see this effects their constituents the more it is in their minds and the likelihood they bring it up when discussing policies.

Things to remember when writing to your MP.

  1. Don’t rant simply tell them your story and how vaping has impacted your life.
  2. Most vapers I have met have a life changing reason why they vape and these laws make it harder for people to switch.
  3. Why it’s important to have bigger bottle sizes and bigger tank capacity.
  4. Try and make the reasons you give ways your suggestions will help many people. Not “I can’t be arsed with filling every 5 minutes”
    More like “thousands of empty small bottles going to waste. We can have more than one serving of many things why not vaping”

If you are interested in this subject and want to dig deeper I highly recommend you watch this Webinar from The New Nicotine Alliance called Can consumers escape EU Restrictions

The latest January 2021

On January 14th 2021 there was an update. A Bill to “make provision for the regulation of the sale and use of electronic cigarettes; to exempt electronic cigarettes from UK law derived from the Tobacco Products Directive; and for connected purposes”

This has got vapers very excited. A bill that states that as of 30th March 2021 the exact things I am talking about in this blog are being taken out of the TRPR.

What does that mean for Vaping ?

It looks as if vaping and traditional cigarettes will finally be talked about as sepearate things. I don’t think it will mean the immediate change to what we have been asking for but that it will be spoken about and a new category made for electronic cigarettes. A step in the right direction for sure as when they come together to discuss the next regulations you would hope that everything we know know will be taken into consideration.

This is fantastic news but doesn’t mean the war is over. We must still get in contact with the our MPs and tell them how important vaping and flavours are to our health and futures. For all we know they could remove electronic cigarettes from the current bill and add the same to the next so we must make sure our thought are known.

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