The packaging of tobacco products has been subject to stringent regulations in the United Kingdom for many years. These restrictions aim to discourage smoking and promote public health by reducing the appeal of tobacco products. In recent years, vaping products have gained popularity as an alternative to traditional tobacco. However, their packaging regulations are not as comprehensive. However, this may change in the future. In this blog post, we will explore the existing packaging restrictions for tobacco products in the UK. Also, how they could be applied to vaping products once the government’s consultation on vaping is concluded.
Packaging Restrictions for Tobacco Products
In the United Kingdom, packaging regulations for tobacco products have evolved over time to minimize their attractiveness. Especially to young people. The restrictions on tobacco packaging include the following elements:
- Standardized Packaging: Since May 2016, all tobacco products must be sold in standardized packaging, often referred to as “plain packaging.” The packaging must be a standardized dark brown colour. Feature prominent graphic health warnings, such as images of diseased organs and dire health consequences of smoking. This approach aims to eliminate the use of attractive branding and logos by tobacco companies.
- Large Health Warnings: The packaging of tobacco products must include large graphic health warnings covering 65% of the front and back of the packaging. These images are designed to communicate the health risks of smoking explicitly.
- No Promotional Elements: Tobacco products must not include any promotional elements, such as glitter, embossing, or holographic effects that could make the packaging more appealing.
- Minimum Pack Size: Small packs containing fewer than 20 cigarettes are banned to discourage impulse buying.
- Restrictions on Flavoured Packaging: Packaging that might imply certain flavours, such as fruit or candy, is not allowed to prevent misleading consumers about the taste of the products.
How These Regulations Could Apply to Vaping Products
As vaping becomes more popular, concerns have arisen about the appeal of vaping products to young people. The UK government has recognized the need to regulate the packaging of vaping products more comprehensively. While the government’s consultation on vaping regulations is still ongoing, it is plausible to consider how similar packaging restrictions could apply to vaping products.
- Standardized Packaging: Vaping products could be required to use standardized packaging. Eliminating the use of appealing designs and branding. A plain, uniform colour could be mandated for all vaping products.
- Large Health Warnings: Just as with tobacco products, large graphic health warnings could be applied to vaping product packaging to communicate the potential health risks associated with vaping.
- No Promotional Elements: Restrictions on promotional elements could prevent the use of eye-catching designs and branding that may attract young consumers.
- Minimum Packaging Size: Setting a minimum size for vaping product packaging could discourage impulse purchases and make it less convenient for younger individuals to buy these products.
- Flavoured Packaging Restrictions: Packaging for flavoured vaping products could be regulated. To ensure it does not mislead consumers about the product’s flavour.
The packaging restrictions for tobacco products in the UK have played their part in reducing smoking rates and promoting public health. While the government’s consultation on vaping regulations is still ongoing, it is likely that vaping product packaging will be subject to more stringent restrictions in the future. Mirroring those already in place for tobacco products. These measures aim to protect public health by discouraging smoking and vaping among the youth. While providing clear information about the associated health risks.
Should regulatory changes be implemented, we won’t hesitate to act. Whether packaging needs changing, labels need adjusting, flavour names changing etc. We are fully supportive of the governments move to make vaping a safer and less accessible for young people. However, we do have reservations about how the government might approach the changes. Their own report into the health aspects of vaping states that it is 95% safer than smoking cigarettes and we just hope that this is taken in to consideration when plans are made. The UK has the best vaping industry in the world, in our opinion. It also has the world leading vaping regulations, that should remain the case.
If you like to call or message us to discuss the potential regulatory changes or anything else regarding white label e-liquid, devices etc. Our contact details are here: https://liquidable.co.uk/#contact