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Posts Tagged ‘ASH’

E-cigarettes: hitting our high streets and here to stay.

Posted on: March 24th, 2014 by admin No Comments

You can get them in hair salons, they have pop-up shops across London, and now – you can get them in Boots. Electronic cigarettes are everywhere!

The high street chemist will start stocking e-cigarette products across the nation and are very vocal about their upcoming relationship with the ‘vaping’ craze. A spokesperson said: “‘From listening to our customers, we also know many people are looking for access to an alternative to smoking, such as e- cigarettes.”

Boots have spent two years working with Fontem to ensure the first product of its kind on its shelves is fully safety reviewed, high quality, and rigorously tested every step of the way. The products won’t be advertised, and will be featured as an ‘over the counter’ product, with the Pharmacist ensuring products are sold appropriately and to over 18s.

Whilst Boots are careful to not be seen as ‘advocating’ e-cigarettes (although wanting to keep up with rivals Lloyds Pharmacy who have recently started stocking e-cigs) they are keen to ensure that quitting aids and therapies such as patches or gum are the ‘preferred’ referral to their customers. However, with The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency stating last year that e-cigarettes would be regulated as quitting aids from 2016, this could be set to change in the not too distant future.

On average, some 7 per cent of EU citizens have used electronic cigarettes or vapour cigarettes in a quit smoking attempt, while in the UK, this figure rises to 9 per cent.

Many big brands are still on the fence with their thoughts and rulings of e-cigarette usage. Thus far McDonald’s, Wetherspoons and The Slug and Lettuce have all banned e-cigarettes use within their premises. Their use has been questioned due to their similarity in appearance to their tobacco laden cousins.

ASH (Action on Smoking and Health) have commented on Boots change of heart on ‘vaping’, and were in praise of their change of direction in stocking products. They said:

“the current evidence would suggest that e-cigarettes are helping some smokers to move away from smoking which is positive. Using an e-cigarette poses much less risk to health than smoking – for the smoker and those around them. We want to see safe and effective products on the market which support as many smokers as possible to quit. “

With over 1.3 million people in the UK thought to be using e-cigarettes, the industry is in agreement that quality and safety regulation is a necessity for what is still a relatively new industry (despite its history dating back decades).

With over 25% of attempts to quit smoking in the UK now supported with e-cigs (out-performing patches, sprays, and nicotine gums), it is hardly surprising that more and more high street stores and chains are set to jump on board the e-cig wagon and begin stocking the electronic devices.

Who will be next? Watch this space!


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