New vaping regulation comes into force today which aims to protect young people and non-smokers from the potential dangers of vaping. 

From today, August 11, flavoured vape products can now only be sold from specialist vape stores. 

Generic retailers like supermarkets, dairies, and service stations will only be able to sell three flavours: mint, menthol and tobacco.  

From May 2022, vape packaging will be required to have health warnings in English and Māori on both sides, and display safety information.

“This legislation is focused on a healthier future for Aotearoa. It strikes a balance between ensuring these products are not marketed or sold to young people, while ensuring vaping products are available for smokers who want to switch to a less harmful alternative,” said

Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall.

Jonathan Devery, co-owner of vape retailers Vapo and Alt, is critical of the changes and says they will hinder the government's smokefree 2025 goal. 

Adults love flavours. They are key to successfully quitting cigarettes. Banning the most popular vape flavours like dessert and fruit variations in New Zealand’s highest traffic retail outlets, but leaving cigarette availability alone, makes no sense,” Devery said in a press release.

Dr Verrall said vaping has “the potential to help people quit smoking as a less harmful alternative” but the changes “help reduce the attractiveness and appeal of vaping products to young people”.

Over a 15-month period the government plans to phase in a range of amendments to the Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products Act 1990. This current amendment is one of many changes. The phasing period started in late 2020 and will finish early 2023. 

Key amendment dates:

11 November 2020

  • Vaping was banned from workplaces, schools, early childhood education and care centres.
  • The sale of vaping products to people under 18 was prohibited

11 May 2021

  • Schools needed to display no “smoking or vaping” notices
  • Vape products banned from containing colouring substances

11 August 2021

  • Flavoured vape products must not be sold at general retailers such as supermarkets and dairies. 

11 September 2021

  • Retailers must display R18 signs at point of sale.

28 November 2021

  • Vaping and smoking while a child is in a vehicle is prohibited.

11 May 2022

  • Vape packaging will need to have health warnings in English and Māori on both sides, and safety information will be required to be displayed. No cartoons or toys can be on packaging.

1 January 2023

  • Manufacturers, importers and specialist vape retailers must disclose annual reports and returns. 

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