Dairies eager to start selling e-cigarettes

Retailers are breathing a sigh of relief as vaping and smokeless tobacco products get closer to being regulated.

The Government's proposed amendments include changing the way products are displayed in stores.

Retail NZ general manager Greg Harford says the products have dodged current law.

"This is really good news because it means dairies and convenience stores will be able to make these products available to people who are seeking to wean themselves off the more harmful tobacco products."

National MP Nicky Wagner says the regulations may go too far and reduce the availability of vaping products for smokers.

"It's good to finally see some direction from the minister on vaping regulations, because we need some certainty and clarity.

"However, Ms Salesa's proposed regulations are quite restrictive and similar to those used currently on smoking tobacco. These are different products and should not be treated the same."

Mr Harford says research show's they're a lot safer than traditional cigarettes.

"They're a good way of helping achieve the Government's goal of a smoke-free Aotearoa by 2025. Retailers are able to contribute to that."

Scientists have warned against the assumption e-cigarettes are better for you, however. The long-term effects are largely unknown, and recent studies have linked vaping to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

In the short-term though, Mr Harford says allowing dairies to sell e-cigarettes will help them recover lost revenue as fewer and fewer Kiwis take up smoking.

"It can help support dairies and convenience stores as they provide services to local communities."


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