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Will Disposable Vapes be Banned in the UK?

Sep 29, 2023

There is a growing backlash against disposable vapes in the UK, and some councils have called for a total ban by 2024.

In this post, we’ll explore why some are turning against disposable vapes, and discuss what this might mean if you run an online or offline vape shop.

If you sell vapes, either online or offline, we can help you get the specialist vape insurance you need at a price you can afford. For more information, call us on 0208 290 9080 or email ecig@anthonyjones.com.

What’s the Problem With Disposable Vapes?

The biggest problem with disposable vapes is that they’re disposable – you use them once, then you throw them away. While it is possible to recycle them, one study found that over 50% of disposable vapes are thrown directly in the bin after use. Also, some estimate that up to 1.3 million disposable vapes are thrown away each week.

Disposable vapes are usually made from plastic, and global plastic pollution has been a major concern for years. And because disposable vapes contain a small lithium battery, there are concerns that they might cause fires when they’re crushed in bin lorries.

Beyond the concerns about waste, there have been reports of toxic chemicals found in disposable vapes. Though all of these reports concern illegal and unregulated vapes, they’ve nonetheless contributed to a growing call to ban disposable vapes.

Finally, some believe that because they taste so sweet, disposable vapes are too appealing for children. It’s illegal to sell vapes to anyone under 18. But that doesn’t seem to be stopping children and teenagers from getting hold of them.

The Call to Ban Disposable Vapes in the UK

The Local Government Association wants disposable vapes banned in the UK by 2024.

However, not everyone’s against disposable vapes. The UK Government, for example, has discussed how vapes can help people quit smoking. And Vape UK has pointed out that UK smoking rates are at an all-time low. Apparently, many ex-smokers claim that disposable vapes, which are cheap, tasty, and easy to use, proved instrumental in helping them to quit.

What’s Stopping the Ban on Disposable Vapes?

Aside from their role in helping some people quit smoking, there are other reasons why we may not see a disposable vape ban anytime soon:

  • If legal disposable vapes are banned, there may be a rise in the use of illegal, unregulated disposable vapes. These will almost certainly be a lot more harmful and hazardous than the vapes currently on the market.
  • Smoking related litter accounts for 68% of all litter in the UK. Local authorities spend £40 million a year cleaning up cigarette butts alone. Though we must take concerns about disposable vape waste seriously, will banning them outright really make a difference to litter levels?
  • With council budgets already stretched thin, how could local authorities possibly afford to enforce a total ban on disposable vapes?

Will Disposable Vapes Be Banned in the UK?

Vape UK, however, claims it’s “highly unlikely” that disposable vapes will be banned any time soon. They point out that many organisations and public health bodies don’t seem to support a ban, and argue that more collaboration will work better to address the problem that disposable vapes pose:

“Councils should be working with the vaping industry, rather than against us. We all need to come together to find meaningful solutions, and improve the enforcement of the rules that are already in place. If those rules then turn out to be inadequate, then we can look at ways to improve them; it may seem counter-intuitive, but the vaping industry is actually in favour of more regulation, not less.”

However, the Local Government Association will probably not be alone in calling for a ban on disposable vapes. It’s also important to remember that 2024 is an election year. Will any parties pledge to ban disposable vapes? And if the UK elects a new prime minister, will the outgoing party outlaw vapes before they leave office? At this stage, it’s impossible to say.

Do You Sell Disposable Vapes?

If you sell disposable vapes, you might be concerned about changes to the law in the coming years. The best thing you can do is to help make the case for the safe and ethical sale of disposable vapes. That way, if the government ever seriously considers a ban, your efforts will help make a strong argument against.

So make sure you:

If you sell vapes, either online or offline, we can help you get the specialist vape insurance you need at a price you can afford. For more information, call us on 0208 290 9080 or email ecig@anthonyjones.com.


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