Illegal vapes taken off the market
Published 6th October 2022
Sandwell Council along with HMRC recently inspected a shop in Smethwick where 3,400 packets of illicit tobacco with a retail value of over £40,000 and 228 illegal vapes worth £2,000 were seized.
Vaping devices are highly regulated by the government to control the amount of nicotine available and have to be approved by the Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
The legal capacity of a disposable e-cigarette tank is 2ml or approximately 650 puffs. Many of those seized were more than double this, ranging from 4.5ml up to 9ml.
As a general guide, if a disposable device offers more than approximately 650 puffs it will be illegal to offer for sale. Many of the offending items found offered up to as many as 3,500 puffs.
Products should also have the name and address of a UK contact if the producer is based outside of the UK. Many of the seized products were missing this information, along with essential instructions for use, and health and safety warnings.
Anyone spotting illegal vapes for sale, or who believes a shop may be selling vaping products to under 18s, should report details to Sandwell’s Trading Standards team.