23 September 2021
The Tasmanian Government appears to have its head in the sand on the issue of nicotine vaping and e-cigarettes, by simply advising the retailers there is nothing changing, when the new Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) regulations for the sale of nicotine vaping products, comes into play on the 1st of October the Australian Association of Convenience Stores (AACS) said today.
“Yesterday’s statements by the Health Minister were disappointing in the extreme”, AACS, CEO Theo Foukkare said.
“There are thousands of Tasmanians currently using nicotine e-cigarettes as a less harmful alternative to traditional cigarettes who will need to get a prescription from 1st October.
“However, the Tasmanian Government appears to be doing everything they can to prevent this from happening by unfairly demonising the product, meaning there will be some very frustrated vapers at the start of next month.
“The Tasmanian Health Department have had the opportunity to separate regulations under two pillars Tobacco and e-cigarettes. However, they have now placed Pharmacy in with Tobacco retailers and under the tobacco act creating a $1200 licensing fee, plus many other obligations that are placed upon them.
“We are now 7 days away from the implementation of the new regulations and we still don’t have answers to basic retail questions, other than play on. It’s absurd.
“On top of this, currently there isn’t a GP in Tasmania on the TGA’s authorised prescribers list.
“We stand ready as responsible tobacco retailers who are trusted by our consumers to give purchasing advice, to assist smokers seeking a less harmful alternative and supply that to them.
“With Tasmania continuing to have the second highest smoking rate in Australia at 17.6 per cent, it beggars belief that the Tasmanian Government continues to ignore the potential of nicotine e-cigarettes to reduce the smoking rate.
Mr Foukkare said it remained the AACS’ view that nicotine e-cigarette and vaping products should be available at licensed tobacco retailers in the same way the traditional cigarettes are.
“It is quite frankly ridiculous that people can buy cigarettes at the local corner store but can’t buy the less-harmful, smoking cessation aid e-cigarette product instead from the same place, like consumers can in the UK, Canada and New Zealand.”
For more information: David Abbott, Font PR, 0400 446 736