Amid calls to ban vape flavours in Scotland, UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) director Doug Mutter has said flavours a massive part in preventing adult smokers, who had switched to vaping, from regressing back to cigarettes.
At the beginning of the month, Mutter took part in a live national TV debate with Sheila Duffy, the chief executive of ASH Scotland, on STV’s current affair show Scotland Tonight.
Duffy said her organisation was “alarmed at the upsurge in child vaping” and called on the government to take action to protect the health of young people.
She said: “The increase in youth vaping is being driven by the popularity of cheap, sweet-flavoured, brightly coloured disposable e-cigarettes and we believe banning flavours would reduce their appeal to youngsters.
“Toxic e-liquids have not been safety tested for inhaling and Scotland should not let big business make big money by targeting addictive, harmful products at our younger people.”
Mutter, who is also the manufacturing and compliance director at VPZ, said: “Youth uptake is partly driven by disposable products and the market is flooded with a lot of unregulated products.
“This highlights the need to properly control and restrict the sales to proper age-restricted retail premises so as to ensure that these products are getting into the hands of the adult smokers and kept well away from children.
“I cannot state strongly enough that vape products are designed for adult smokers and the message is simple – if you do not smoke then do not vape.”
He rejected allegations that vape products which complied with UK regulations had not undergone safety tests for inhaling the e-liquid vapour.
Mutter added: “There is a full list, publicly available, of all approved products on the UK market which have undergone testing for toxicological and emission levels, all of which have been deemed acceptable for inhalation.
“The big problem we have is from the illegal, imported disposable products that totally flout all the rules. Vape sales must be thoroughly restricted, licensed and controlled and there need to be severe penalties for those who don’t stick to the rules.”