Last Updated on May 9, 2016 by Team Spinfuel

While many people are still in shock over the announcement on May 5th, 2016, by the FDA, which essentially proved that every effort made by every organization to nullify any harsh regulations over electronic cigarettes in the US to actually pass, has ultimately fell on deaf ears, we provide a timely piece on how the TPD in the UK may affect c-cigarette users there. This piece was scheduled for today, and we still believe its a suitable addition to Spinfuel Commentary.

How the TPD will affect you: All you Need to Know

As the majority of you are already aware, come later this month a crucial decision will be made about the future of vaping.

The upcoming Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) aims to regulate e-cigarettes as a tobacco product and therefore enforce legislations around their use, consumption and sales.

What is the Tobacco Products Directive?

The Tobacco Products Directive is an EU legislation was originally released in 2001 with the aim of reducing tobacco usage across Europe. In 2014, e-cigarettes were added to this directive after heated discussions and debates over their need to be regulated. In order for this to go through, and for e-cigs to be classified as tobacco related products, the proposal was bundled together with other proposals such as plain packaging for tobacco cigarettes and larger health warnings. This then tipped the vote over the edge for e-cigarettes to come under the TPD.

This newly revised set of TPD rules will be implemented across the EU to specify how e-cigs can be sold, presented and even manufactured, on 20th May 2016.

What will be the Biggest Changes to E-Cigarettes?

Amongst several other new rules, the most significant changes are as follows:

  • The maximum size of nicotine containers will be 10ml
    We’ll no longer be able buy our standard size containers – t he bigger quantities we tend to get to reduce cost. The reasoning behind this is to lessen the chance of any accidental poisoning. Although, of course, buying 2 litres of bleach from the corner shop is still legal.
  • Cartridges or tanks can’t exceed 2ml
    Large tanks that the majority of people currently use will no longer be legal.
  • The maximum nicotine strength of e-liquid will become 20mg
    The usual strength that people use when they start vaping is 24g as this really helps the transition from tobacco. Now, 20mg will be the maximum strength which has been implemented due to poisoning concerns despite there being no scientific evidence supporting this but rather, disproving it.
  • E-cigarettes are required to provide a consistent amount of nicotine
    As it currently stands, no device has a consistent dose of nicotine as the user can draw for as little or long as they want. Tobacco cigarettes do not even need to comply to this difficult requirement.
  • E-cigarettes and their refill containers will be required to have a leak free refilling mechanism
    It’s difficult to say exactly how this will impact the vaping industry as no current system can be completely ‘leak free’ as it is largely down to the user. Whilst leaking is sometimes unavoidable, it’s rarely an actual issue and vapers will learn how to deal with it as time goes on.
  • If a ‘competent authority’ has reason to believe that any vaping product is a health risk, they may be prohibited
    If three states who are members of the EU prohibit a product, this can then be applied to all EU member states – meaning an EU ban.

The New Notification Scheme

Suppliers and manufacturers of e-cigarettes must now submit information on:

  • All ingredients
  • Toxicological data regarding the product’s emissions and ingredients
  • The nicotine dose
  • A full description of components
  • A description of the production process

New Packaging Requirements

Again, suppliers and manufacturers of e-cigarettes must now adhere to these rules RE packaging:

  • Containers will have to have child-resistant closures
  • Packaging must be tamper-evident
  • The labelling must have a health warning
  • Each product will need to have an accompanying leaflet 

How will the TPD Change the Way you Vape?

Unfortunately, it would seem that come 20th  May, drastic change will happen within the vaping industry effecting manufacturers, suppliers and users alike. One industry famous reviewer, Mark Todd says that although he believes that there should be regulations put in place, especially around e-liquid, he believes that “the way the TPD is being implemented is terrible”. So what are the changes the above regulations will create?

  • There’s a chance that all refillable products will be banned in accordance with the ‘mechanism that ensures refilling without leakage’.
  • The likelihood is that replaceable heads will be banned as altering the head on the atomizer Mark Todd could be seen as ‘tampering’.
  • Refill containers over 10ml will be prohibited. Currently, the majority of people buy 30ml per purchase which will soon not be possible.
  • As e-cigarettes don’t produce ‘consistent levels’ of nicotine, variable voltage and variable watt products may be banned.
  • E-liquids stronger than 20mg will no longer be available. The maximum strength will probably end up being 18mg so that suppliers ensure they won’t break the rules.
  • As a result of the new notification scheme that states all chemical components need to be supplied, it is likely that there will be a reduction in flavours and e-liquids.
  • There will be an increased cost with reduced choice and decreased availability for products.
  • There’s the possibility of an EU wide ban if 3 member states decide that they are unsafe.

To us in the vaping industry, it’s very hard to accept that our beloved electronic cigarettes that has saved us from the clutches of tobacco’s fatal grip, are considered to be and regulated the same way as tobacco products.

We all wait with baited breath for the 20th May and can only cross our fingers and toes in anticipation that somehow, the TPD will change.

Download the TPD here

Grey Haze are a pioneer in the British vaping industry, selling a range of branded and their own e-cigarettes and e-liquids. Leading the vaping lifestyle movement in the West Midlands, Grey Haze provide innovative vaping products globally as well as featuring heavily in the vaping expo community. Also, their original and media rich blog posts are extremely popular in the vaping community