With no news yet from the EU Courts of Justice regarding the TW legal challenge against Article 20 of the Tobacco Products Directive (TPD), the UK is gearing up towards implementing the TPD.
Due to come into force in May of this year, it will set severe limitations for the e-cigarette industry when it comes to advertising.
The Committee of Advertising Practice have put out a press release stating that they are looking at the changes required, ones that will apply only to nicotine-containing e-cigarettes, nicotine-containing e-liquids and components of those products. They state, “the legislative picture is still developing and is complex”, which could be interpreted to mean they still don’t know exactly what is expected of them.
The rules are slightly strange, you can’t advertise in cold call e-mail, but you can advertise on the side of a bus. All the following forms of advertising will be banned: TV or on-demand TV, radio, Internet display advertising, E-mail, Text message, newspapers, magazines, periodicals, (but trade publications are excluded from this ban) sponsorship and product placement.
To receive emails from e-cig companies, you must be signed up.
This is what will be allowed for now at least, though some are suggesting that e-cigarette advertising will go the same way as tobacco advertising, i.e. be completely banned; leaflets, outdoor posters and bus posters, cinema advertising, fax machines, direct hard copy mail. There has been some clarification given in a recent MHRA meeting, and if you have signed up to dedicated mailing lists, you will still be able to receive e-mails and information from those e-cigarette companies.
The press release states, “We understand that marketers will be permitted to maintain websites but that the law may limit the type of content that is acceptable. We are awaiting further clarification from the Department of Health. We are not yet aware of how the legislation in Scotland might impact websites.”
Want more Vaped? Check out our Article ‘E-cigs the Most Popular Quit Aid… but Still the Bad Guy?’