28 Oct 2022

Massive growth in vape retailers fuelling youth epidemic

From Nine To Noon, 9:20 am on 28 October 2022
Closeup detail of Female with an Electronic Cigarette, Horizontal shot

Photo: 123RF

Some vape products are being sold with much more nicotine than legally allowed - leading to the Government issuing an urgent safety alert this week. 

This comes as public health experts sound the alarm at the growing number of vape shops around the country -- 300 new stores opening up since February alone. 

Vape products here can legally contain more than double the amount of nicotine than is allowed in the United Kingdom and Europe.

Under New Zealand regulations, vapes can have up to 50 micro grams of nicotine salts, but some retailers have been interpreting that as allowing 50mg of freebase nicotine - which is actually limited to 20 micro grams.

The Asthma and Respiratory Foundation says vape products are far too easily accessible, too visible and this is fuelling the epidemic of youth vaping.

Letitia Harding is the chief executive of the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation, also with us public health researcher professor Janet Hoek.