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The Tobacco and Vaping Products Act (TVPA) became law on May 23, 2018 and came into force in November 2018 and provides a legal framework for governing vaping products. Adults can legally acquire vaping products with nicotine as a less harmful option than smoking. Vaping products which do not make health claims are covered by the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act which regulates ingredients, labelling, packaging etc. Unfortunately, not making 'health claims' means manufacturers are not able to inform customers about the lower risk levels in vaping compared to smoking. E-cigarettes can, technically, be classified as a medicinal product under the Food and Drugs Act if health claims are made, but to date, no electronic cigarettes have been granted FDA approval. States also have their own legislation which varies and covers restrictions on sales to minors, where you can vape, and promotional restrictions. In January 2019, the Canadian government published health education messages about the comparative relative risks of vaping.
Selling e-cigarettes (containing nicotine) and control mechanisms
Sale of e-cigarettes
Allowed [1, 2, 3]
As tobacco products
Yes [1, 2, 3]
As medicinal products
Yes [1, 2, 3]
As consumer goods
Yes [1, 2, 3]
References

1. Vapetrotter website. Available at: https://www.vapetrotter.com/laws/

2. Global tobacco control website. Available at: https://www.globaltobaccocontrol.org/node/14052

3. Tobacco Control Laws website. Available at : https://www.tobaccocontrollaws.org/legislation/

General use and availability
Legal to use
Yes [1, 2, 3]
Legal to sell e-cigarette device
Yes [1, 2, 3]
Legal to sell nicotine
Yes [1, 2, 3]
Legal to buy device online (personal use)
Yes [1, 2, 3]
Legal to buy nicotine online (personal use)
Yes [1, 2, 3]
References

1. Vapetrotter website. Available at: https://www.vapetrotter.com/laws/

2. Global tobacco control website. Available at: https://www.globaltobaccocontrol.org/node/14052

3. Tobacco Control Laws website. Available at : https://www.tobaccocontrollaws.org/legislation/

Health
Minimum age restrictions on sales
Yes 19+ [1, 2, 3]
Legal restrictions on vaping in public places
Yes [1, 2, 3]
References

1. Vapetrotter website. Available at: https://www.vapetrotter.com/laws/

2. Global tobacco control website. Available at: https://www.globaltobaccocontrol.org/node/14052

3. Tobacco Control Laws website. Available at : https://www.tobaccocontrollaws.org/legislation/

Notes on methodology & limitations

Data has been collected from a range of sources which are openly available online, such as vaping information/regulation websites & direct from country's legislation where available. In a few instances information has been included which was received from individuals specialising in the field. The regulatory picture changes frequently and these data boxes show the situation at time of going to press. This website will be updated as/when new regulatory information is received. There are gaps in the data available - readers are invited to send in updated information to the GSTHR team.

Country News

  • Monday, October 14, 2019
  • E-cigarette companies join forces to lobby against proposed vaping regulations

  • Some of the biggest e-cigarette companies in Canada have joined forces to create an industry association to lobby against proposed government regulations amid widening concerns over the health risks of vaping.

    The Vaping Industry Trade Association (VITA) officially launched last month. President Daniel David said the goal is to help ensure regulations prevent youth access while allowing companies to advertise their products to existing smokers and continue to use flavours adults enjoy.

  • Tuesday, October 08, 2019
  • Breakenridge: Moral panic over vaping could do more harm than good

  • Even if Alberta’s Tobacco and Smoking Reduction Act wasn’t up for a scheduled review, one couldn’t fault the government for looking into whether any gaps exist or whether the law could be improved in any way.

    As it happens, the act does require that a review begins by Nov. 1, and the Alberta government intends on using the opportunity to examine whether we need new regulations to specifically address vaping products. Hopefully, they’ll take a cautious, considered approach to this issue as opposed to the knee-jerk overreaction some voices are calling for.

  • Friday, October 04, 2019
  • Vaping complicating efforts to get smokers to quit: expert

  • Dr. Rob Reid, deputy chief of prevention and rehabilitation at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute, said vaping — used by many as a tool to attempt to quit smoking — can actually complicate things.

    A growing issue is that increasing numbers of smokers prefer to quit using e-cigarettes, he said, but the vast majority, in his experience, go on to smoke and vape at the same time, rather than quitting cigarettes entirely.

    “More people are attempting to quit (smoking) using vaping than all other combined (tools). [...]

  • Friday, October 04, 2019
  • Let’s clear the air: Vaping holds great promise for smokers

  • The outbreak of vaping-related lung disease among youth in the United States, along with a recent case in London, Ont., has sparked calls for new regulations designed to protect our youth from vaping. These calls have ranged from placing tighter restrictions on youth advertising all the way to banning the sales of e-cigarettes completely. Vaping among youth in Canada has increased dramatically in recent years. According to survey data, 20 per cent of youth have vaped in the past 30 days and some are daily users. [...]

  • Thursday, October 03, 2019
  • CIGARETTES ARE OUT, VAPING IS IN

  • Smoking cigarettes has a well documented history of causing health problems, such as lung cancer, and respiratory diseases. But there isn’t the same level of knowledge about vaping, and recent news about illnesses and deaths have raised concerns about the health effects of vaping. 

    “These products will likely be at least 95 per cent less hazardous [than cigarettes] just based on what we know,” said David Sweanor, a Canadian lawyer and professor at the University of Ottawa who focuses on public health. “Cigarettes are just so incredibly deadly,” he added.  

  • Tuesday, October 01, 2019
  • Vape ban could undo gains in smoking cessation, expert warns

  • The growing moral panic around vaping could have disastrous consequences, warns a key figure in the global effort to reduce cigarette smoking.

    David Sweanor [...] said bans and restrictions on vaping could drive more people to smoke, undoing years of public health efforts to reduce the habit. Over the past 30 years, Sweanor has spearheaded the development of efforts to reduce cigarette smoking in Canada and around the world.

    “It is like everyone has forgotten about smoking, which will kill over 100 Canadians today,” he said.