Clause 62 - Contents and flavour of vaping products and nicotine products

Part of Tobacco and Vapes Bill – in a Public Bill Committee am 10:45 am ar 14 Mai 2024.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Bob Blackman Bob Blackman Ceidwadwyr, Harrow East 10:45, 14 Mai 2024

I rise in support of clause 62, noting the two amendments proposed by a Member not on the Committee that would have removed the power of the Secretary of State to deal with flavours. I consider it vital that the Secretary of State can make regulations about flavours of vaping products and nicotine products. As has been said, this is a much-needed power to help curb youth vaping.

The chief medical officer Sir Chris Whitty spoke very strongly when giving evidence to the Committee. He said:

“We are strongly supportive of Ministers in all four nations having the power to regulate flavours…We know that otherwise the vape industry will use this to essentially drive a coach and horses through the aims of the Bill, which is to make products less attractive to children”.––[Official Report, Tobacco and Vapes Public Bill Committee, 1 May 2024; c. 74, Q103.]

Indeed, literally overnight Action on Smoking and Health has published data showing that youth vaping has stabilised. That is the good news. The bad news is that 7.6% of 11 to 17-year-olds regularly vape. That is above the pre-pandemic level of 4.4%, so it has almost doubled since then. Young people are being encouraged to become addicted to vaping and will potentially go on to even more harmful products.

Exposure to marketing is also up. Some 55% of young people are exposed to vaping in shops, where vapes are on full display, and nearly a third are exposed to vaping online, so we need to take action. The measures in the Bill, particularly in this clause, will make starting to vape far less attractive to young people. That is why it is essential that it remains part of the Bill. I hope that as the Bill progresses we can resist further proposals that might seek to remove this measure from the Bill.