Free Market Wonks Blast Ban on Disposable Vapes

Freedom-loving wonks are steaming at today’s news that the government is expected to ban disposable vapes, with think tanks across Westminster outraged at the “restriction of choices for millions”. As always, Guido brings you the low down on the reactions:

Unsurprisingly, The Adam Smith Institute finds this an unwelcome proposal, claiming that if the ban goes through, the government “can kiss goodbye to Smoke free 2030“. Maxwell Marlow, Director of Research said:

“The Department of Health repeatedly, and correctly, states that vaping is less harmful than smoking. The evidence is crystal clear that vaping is a vital public health tool which helps cigarette smokers kick their habit, and disposable vapes are part of this formula. It is already illegal to sell e-cigarettes to children, with very heavy fines levied on the criminals that do. Banning these vapes will have the opposite effect to the one the Department desires, fuelling the black market economy and making enforcement more difficult. Britons should be asking why we are being asked to endanger public health, simply because the Government has failed to enforce its own laws properly.”

Of course, the Institute of Economic Affairs doubts it will go down well when the smoke clears. Christopher Snowdon, Head of Lifestyle Economics added:

“A ban on disposable vapes will restrict the choices of millions of adult smokers who could benefit from switching to them. E-cigarettes are life saving products that can only legally be sold to people over the age of 18. We do not ban cider because some teenagers drink it. We do not ban 18 certificate films because some teenagers watch them. We don’t ban cigarettes because some teenagers smoke them. If these reports are true, the government has mistaken legislating for governing. The answer to underage vaping is to enforce the laws that already exist. There is no reason why children should be able to buy e-cigarettes more easily than they can buy vodka.”

FOREST aren’t happy, calling it a “significant own goal” as it seems to be all smoke and mirrors from the government. Director, Simon Clark, said:

If the Government’s aim is to reduce smoking rates, banning disposable vapes would be a significant own goal. Vaping has been a huge success story, with millions of smokers choosing to switch to a product that is far less risky to their health. Part of that success is due to disposable vapes which are convenient and easy to use. The answer to the problem of children vaping is not to ban a product many adults use to help them quit smoking, but to crack down on retailers who are breaking the law and selling e-cigarettes to anyone under 18.”

Not everyone is telling the government to stick the ban in their pipe and smoke it… the RSPCA took to Twitter/X to write:

“We’re pleased to see the news this morning that the Government is considering a ban on disposable vapes…  We’ve been calling for this as they are environmentally damaging and pose a threat to wildlife and animals.”

Snowdon has hit the nail on the head: vaping is already outlawed for under-18s, so enforcing the law as it is would have solved the problem. Disposable vapes are an inexpensive way for adult smokers to wean off cigarettes. This is the typical government response of making an illegal act even more illegal. What have they been smoking…

mdi-timer 12 September 2023 @ 12:30 12 Sep 2023 @ 12:30 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments