Responsible Vaping Australia (RVA), an initiative of British American Tobacco Australia, has recently launched in partnership with retailer and industry associations. It has hopes of ending the black market trade of nicotine vaping products and ensuring Australian adult consumers are able to buy products in a responsible and regulated way.
“Working in partnership with leading retailers and associations, we can demonstrate to the government our industry’s commitment to product standards, clear product labelling, ingredients quality and responsible retailing practices to prevent youth access,” says British American Tobacco Australia General Manager Rory Cotter.
According to RVA’s website, Australia now has more than 1.1 million adult vapers, a 260% rise over the past five years. This is despite anti-vaping advertising campaigns and a nationwide ban on the retail sale of nicotine vaping products.
RVA also cites research that shows only 12% of adult nicotine vapers currently have a prescription to buy their vaping products.
“Ineffective existing government laws are exploited by illegal operators who are selling unregulated products to anyone they want, including children,” says RVA. “This current policy has created a black market that exploits our youth, increases the chances of children taking up vaping, and sustains a supply infrastructure for substandard products.”
Mr Cotter adds: “Without regulatory reform in Australia, the black market for vaping products will continue to grow at the expense of the lawful retail industry and adult vapers who deserve access to regulated products sold by responsible retailers.
“By working together to achieve the sensible regulation of vaping products, we will deliver sustainable value for the whole retail industry while implementing industry leading responsible retailing practices.”
RVA calls on Australians to “add your voice to help legalise nicotine vaping in Australia”, by signing the initiative’s petition (responsiblevaping.com.au/take-action) and contacting their local MP.
RVA’s industry supporters include AACS, Cignall, CTC, Freechoice Tobacconist, King of the Pack, Master Grocers Association, Ritchies, Romeo’s, Smokemart, Spano’s and TSG.