Let me start by saying I am a 100% remain backer. As a young Londoner, I guess I’m the exact profile to be a remain voter and was heartbroken to learn that we voted to leave the European Union.
I loved visa-free travel, as travelling is another huge passion of mine. But more than anything else, I loved being part of a modern, connected Europe.
However, one potential silver lining of the Brexit vote is that the impending EU regulations on e cigarettes will not affect me.
New EU regulations are currently being pushed through which will mean that pretty much all box mods, EGO style vape pens and all ecigs that aren’t the sort of mass produced ones that tobacco companies will make will be outlawed.
They are trying to outlaw them on the basis of leaking and the potential for nicotine solution to leak onto your skin, and obviously all good vape pens will have some risk of leaking!
This means that all the small businesses that are driving innovation in the vape scene will have a huge market crashed overnight, and all we’ll be left with is crappy vape pens you can buy in tescos.
No choice but to go underground and buy directly from China.
There is no doubt in my mind that much of this is being pushed through by big tobacco companies who want to retain as much control of the market as possible and see vaping as a threat to their profits, because it is so much cheaper and healthier.
They are also going to make tank sizes smaller, with a maximum 2ml cap.
THe regulations will also enforce extremely stringent testing and regulation on eliquids and ecigs too. This sounds great, but each test will cost tens of thousands, which once again will bully the smaller manufacturers who are creating the best stuff out of business.
As the register put it in this article:
“The Belgian regulator is asking producers for €4,000 for testing a liquid, and requiring separate procedures for each strength in a batch (2mg, 4mg and so on). Here the cost is £150 per batch, and that covers all concentrations in a batch, with an £80 registration fee. (See the fees SI here.) That should make producing e-liquids economic. It’s far lower than was feared some three years ago, when it appeared only big companies could afford to stay in the game (or enter the game – high fees simply ensure survival for today’s tobacco companies, rather than the diverse market we have today).
There’s a six-month grace period for producers before applications (for new products) need to be sent up to the MHRA. Any liquids produced before 20 November can continue to be sold. Only by the 19 May 2017 will non-TPD compliant products need to be removed from the shelves.
The most immediate impact will be on British exporters, as the cross-border regulations nominally designed to ease trade actually tie it up in knots.
Dorn thinks higher-concentrate liquids should be continue to be obtainable through word of mouth channels, rather than overt channels like eBay, or in the e-cig shop itself. But with anti-vaping fanatics eager to see the practice stamped out, only a repeal of the TPD/TRPR itself will ensure the long-term market.”
Scary stuff indeed, but perhaps a Brexit will make UK lawmakers rethink their position on life saving e cigs.