February 28, 2019
British American Tobacco (BAT) UK has announced the roll out of a new youth access prevention scheme, BAT VerifY, to ensure all vaping products exclusively target adult smokers and vapers.
Speaking to the MPs during a session of the All-Parliamentary Party Group on Vaping on Tuesday, BAT, which owns the popular brand Vype, outlined a series of initiatives aimed at ensuring the responsible marketing and retailing of e-cigarettes.
“All e-cigarette producers have a role to play in preventing young people from accessing nicotine containing products and at BAT UK we continue to have strict vetting of our marketing communications and are working closely with retailers to improve the processes and checks around sales,” said Gemma Webb, General Manger UK & Ireland at BAT.
BAT VerifY will ensure that all retailers of e-cigarettes are aware of their role in the prevention of access to vaping by under-18s, the company said. It will include activities aimed at ensuring that retailers are aware of the minimum age for the sale of vaping products; their responsibilities with regards to ensuring the minimum age is checked and complied with; and promoting best practices of age verification.
The company has also been instrumental in the drafting of the new UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) Code of Conduct on youth vaping prevention, which outlines ten principles members must follow as part of efforts to prevent under-18s using e-cigarettes, it added.
The e-cigarette market has grown rapidly over the past few years, with an estimated 3.2 million adults in the UK using an e-cigarette. Along with this rapid growth in the UK, there have been concerns in some other countries, particularly the US, that under-18s are accessing vaping products as well.
Mark Pawsey MP, Chairman of the APPG, said: “The e-cigarette market is developing at lightning speed and is a great example of how innovation can be harnessed to improve public health, by helping smokers to cut down or quit. But with this comes a responsibility to prevent young people from having access to these products. Today the industry has taken an important step in ensuring this is the case thanks to the UKVIA’s new Code of Conduct.”