The Government is coming hard for all the hoons out there with a few new laws set to fight against the popular disposable vaping devices.
Dr Ayesha Verrall, the Minister of Health, announced the new laws in a press conference today, citing the growing number of youths puffing on vapes as a reason for their introduction.
“From August this year, all vaping devices sold in New Zealand will need to have removable or replaceable batteries," Verrall said.
“We also want vapes as far from the minds and reach of children and young people as possible, so any locations within 300 metres of schools and marae will be off-limits for new shops.”
"From August, vapes will need child safety mechanisms, and potentially enticing names like 'cotton candy' and 'strawberry jelly doughnut' which accompany far too many products will be prohibited. Only generic names which accurately describe the flavours can be used such as 'berry.'"
She added that vapes should be used as a tool to ween people off smoking, rather than another instrument of addiction.
“New Zealand's smoking rate is half the rate of what it was 10 years ago, with the number of people smoking falling by 56,000 in the past year. We're creating a future where tobacco products are no longer addictive, appealing or as readily available, and the same needs to apply to vaping."
The new laws come just a month after Australia announced similar laws. Across the Tasman, generic retailers such as petrol stations, supermarkets and dairies are restricted to only selling vaping products in mint, tobacco and menthol flavours.
The nicotine concentrations and volumes will be reduced, while vape products will also be repackaged to resemble some more 'pharmaceutical-like'. All single-use vapes in Australia will also be banned.
Back in NZ, starting in August, disposable vapes will have three months to abide by the new laws, and refillable vapes will have six months.