Education, Not Plain Packaging, Key to Protecting Youth from Vaping

10 June 2024, The Hague – The World Vapers’ Alliance expresses grave concerns over the Dutch cabinet’s recent decision to apply plain packaging requirements to vaping products. The move, proposed by State Secretary Van Ooijen of Public Health, Welfare and Sport, aims to reduce the attractiveness of these products to young people, but it overlooks critical distinctions between vaping and smoking.

“The ultimate protection for the youth lies in education and fulfilling lives for Europe’s young people. We must heed their voices. Surveys consistently reveal that teens tend to engage in risky behaviours when they face challenges like school issues, health problems, or poverty. At the same time, packaging only plays a minor role for initiation. If genuinely safeguarding youth is the goal, advocating for improved education, healthcare, and economic conditions becomes imperative. Regrettably, achieving these goals is complex, leading many politicians to opt for sensational yet ineffective policies that overlook tangible outcomes,” said Michael Landl, Director of the World Vapers’ Alliance.

The World Vapers’ Alliance believes that accurate and fact-based information about vaping is essential. Placing vaping products in the same regulatory category as combustible tobacco products, including plain packaging requirements, risks misleading current smokers about the significant harm reduction benefits of switching to vaping. Research shows that vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking cigarettes.

While the intent to prevent youth vaping is understandable, it is vital to balance this with the need to facilitate smoking cessation among adults. Effective youth protection is achieved through comprehensive education and supportive environments, not by conflating vaping with smoking through uniform packaging laws.



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Vaping can save 200 million lives and flavours play a key role in helping smokers quit. However, policymakers want to limit or ban flavours, putting our effort to end smoking-related deaths in jeopardy.

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