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Company Statement: Response to ITV Tonight’s ‘How Safe is Your Vape?’ Programme

A report by journalist Jonathan Maitland aired on ITV Tonight last night (06/02/2020) contained a number of inaccuracies, omissions and distortions about the UK vaping industry that could prevent many smokers transitioning to a safer form of nicotine. The report has already been challenged by the UKVIA (UK Vaping Industry Association) and we would like to present our position here.

Most alarming is the report’s attempts to transplant the current panic that has arisen in the US around vaping to the UK’s shores. 2019 saw a number of vaping-related illnesses in the US that arose primarily from the lack of sufficient US regulations and standards and the use of black market products that contained THC and harmful vitamin E acetate: products that are strictly illegal in the UK and EU.

Vapers in the UK and EU are protected by the Tobacco Products Directive (2016) and a raft of other regulations designed to prevent any risk to users of e-liquids, e-cigarette devices and nicotine-containing products, and to ensure quality and safety. Our industry’s rigorous adherence to and support for these standards have made vaping the safest way to reduce dependence on traditional tobacco. Public Health England’s have taken the position that vaping is 95% safer than smoking and are joined by many other health bodies and charitable organisations.

At Vape Store, we believe in providing vapers with a safe, quality product, one that meets stringent toxicological tests set by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and conforms to TPD regulations.

As one of the largest e-liquid manufacturers in the UK, all of our e-liquids are produced in ISO Class 7 certified cleanrooms at our purpose-built, state-of-the-art Vapouriz Labs in Guildford, Surrey. Vapouriz e-liquids contain only food-approved flavourings, nicotine, and propylene glycol and vegetable glycerol, which are all pharmaceutical grade as defined by the European Pharmacopoeia Standard Monograph, and all sourced within the EU.

We encourage you to read the UKVIA’s statement in full:

Here is the UKVIA statement in full:

The UKVIA Responds to ITV Tonight: How Safe is your Vape?

Due to the scale of inaccuracy and omission made by Johnathan Maitland’s investigation for ITV yesterday evening (Thursday), the UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) is compelled to respond. The show, entitled ‘How Safe is your Vape?’, will serve not to inform or protect the public, but instead to keep people smoking cigarettes.

The UKVIA was denied permission to comment on the show, which similarly failed to give the right-to-response to manufacturers and retailers. This proved severely detrimental to the balance of the programme, as evidenced by the particularly egregious examples below:

On vaping safety in the US

Maitland fails to mention that vaping-related deaths in the US have been overwhelmingly linked to the use of THC and vitamin E acetate, a practice which is banned in the UK.[1] This is drastically different to the conventional, nicotine-based vaping which British consumers are familiar with.

The UK’s robust regulatory landscape ensures that products purchased legitimately are safe for use as directed. As sub-standard or illicit products may be available from black market sources, consumers should always use reputable retailers when making purchases.

On CDC guidance

The programme referenced growing, institutional concerns regarding vaping products in the US, accompanied by menacing, distorted news reports. In truth, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) scrapped its blanket warning on vaping in January.

Dr Brian King, Chief Science Officer at the CDC, said “Recommendations were refined to reflect the best available scientific evidence and to best protect public health…The available science shows that Vitamin E acetate is strongly linked (to the reported illnesses)”.[2]

On UK legislation and regulation

The programme featured an attack by Prof Stanton Glantz of the University of California on the UK’s approach to vaping. The inclusion of Prof Glantz, a renowned critic of vaping, makes the lack of an invitation to industry spokespeople all the more jarring.

Despite Prof Glantz’s claims, the UK’s example remains a beacon for public health professionals interested in progressive harm reduction policies. UCL School of Pharmacy notes that “British policies on encouraging vaping as a substitute for smoking can be regarded as world leading and are likely to reduce both cancer and heart disease rates”.[3]

On vaping and smoking frequency

Maitland’s ignorance of even the basic mechanics of vaping was evident from the programme’s first segment, in which he alluded to the frequency with which people vape. Due to the differing natures of nicotine delivery exhibited by vaping and smoking, this is not a cause for concern.

Whereas cigarettes deliver a significant dose of nicotine to the smoker in a short period of time, the experience of the vaping user is more akin to grazing,[4] in which a consistent nicotine level is maintained. For this reason, any direct comparison is a false equivalency.

On the case of Ewan Fisher

Mr Fisher was a former smoker who sadly experienced an allergic reaction while vaping. His symptoms were serious, although allergic reactions of this kind are, thankfully, vanishingly rare – a caveat not made by Maitland’s programme.

Prof John Britton, Director at the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies, describes the risk of this reaction as ‘extremely small and, crucially, far smaller than that of smoking’.[5]

On the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Vaping

The UKVIA acts as secretariat for the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Vaping, as part of our remit to champion the transformative harm-reduction potential of our industry. All details related to our work are published and a matter of public, in-keeping with our commitment to transparency.

The UKVIA represents the entire vaping industry,[6] from manufacture, to retail, to supply chain. A full list of our membership is always available online at www.ukvia.co.uk.

The net impact of Maitland’s programme will be to keep people smoking cigarettes, which results in more than 200 deaths every day in the UK. When dealing with issues of public health and harm reduction, the bar for accuracy must be set particularly high. It is the opinion of the UKVIA that ITV’s programming fell well short in this regard.

References:

[1] Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention (CDC) – Updated 28 January 2020: ‘National and state data from patient reports and product sample testing show tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)-containing e-cigarette, or vaping, products, particularly from informal sources like friends, family, or in-person or online dealers, are linked to most EVALI cases and play a major role in the outbreak.’

[2] Dr Brian King (CDC) – 17th January 2020 – https://www.wsj.com/articles/cdc-steps-back-from-broad-recommendation-to-refrain-from-e-cigarettes-11579293494

[3] Cancer Policy Update: Agenda for the 2020s (UCL) – https://www.ucl.ac.uk/pharmacy/sites/pharmacy/files/v_final_cancer_policy_update_embargo_jan_10_2020.pdf

[4] New Nicotine Alliance (NNA) – April 2019 – http://www.ukvia.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/Switch-on-to-Vaping-Plan-Digital-2-2-2.pdf

[5] Prof John Britton, UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies – 12 November 2019 –https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-50377256

[6] UKVIA – 27 November 2019 – http://www.ukvia.co.uk/a-democratic-industry-body-committed-to-vaping-safety/

What should you do if you have concerns about vaping?

-Only buy e-cigarette devices and e-liquid from reputable, TPD-compliant manufacturers and suppliers such as Vapestore.

-Talk to one of our professional customer services specialists for advice and guidance on all aspects of e-cigarettes and vaping at support@vapouriz.com or call 0800 644 0000.

-Talk to your GP or another certified health professional about using e-cigarettes.

Why has the US banned Flavoured Pods?

After weeks of mixed signals from the White House following a spate of vaping-related illnesses that emerged in the latter half of 2019, President Donald Trump announced last week that the administration will proceed with a ban on flavoured pods in the US.

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) confirmed the nationwide ban on the kinds flavoured pods that have become hugely popular among vapers, especially among younger users. The trend has alarmed many critics of vaping within the US government and citizenry concerned that “child-friendly” flavours like fruits and confectionary might be creating a nicotine dependence among users who didn’t smoke.

The HHS has ordered that makers of electronic nicotine delivery systems—including e-cigarettes and other vaping products—cease the manufacturing, distribution, and sale of these pods within 30 days. They must also ensure that age verification – 21 is the legal age in the US ­­- is mandatory in stores and online.

The policy is notable for the exemptions it makes for menthol and tobacco flavoured pods, and the fact that it does not affect open-tank devices of the sort favoured by longer-term vapers and hobbyists.

We wanted to clarify what this might mean for vapers here in the UK and our customers abroad.

Firstly, the policy only applies to companies within the United States. There has been no analogous health reports to emerge from the UK and other European countries, where vaping is strictly regulated by the EU Tobacco Products Directive of 2016.

Secondly, the policy appears most targeted towards pod manufacturers like JUUL, who have come under increased scrutiny in the last couple of years for their efforts to market their closed-system pod kits to young people.

The illnesses behind the recent health scare and a rush to legislate in the US has been identified by the FDA (US Food and Drug Administration) to derive from black market products that contain THC, the psychoactive compound from marijuana. These products contain an oil that carries Vitamin E acetate. Vitamin E acetate is commonly found as a nutritional supplement and is considered harmless when ingested orally or applied to the skin. However, experts say that its molecular structure and oil-like properties make it hazardous to inhale, such as you would with an e-cigarette.

Vapers in the UK and wider EU can continue to buy vape products with confidence from Vapestore, Vapouriz and other legitimate, reputable retailers who comply with TPD legislation and adhere to quality, safe, lab-approved e-liquids and devices.

 

What should you do if you have concerns about vaping?

-Only buy e-cigarette devices and e-liquid from reputable, TPD-compliant manufacturers and suppliers such as Vapestore.

-Talk to one of our professional customer services specialists for advice and guidance on all aspects of e-cigarettes and vaping at support@vapouriz.com or call 0800 644 0000.

-Talk to your GP or another certified health professional about using e-cigarettes.

Vapouriz: Company Statement regarding recent media reports about Vaping

 

We were saddened to read in this week’s news about a young man who became unwell after allegedly vaping e-cigarettes. Aged just 16 when he started vaping, the man was treated for hypersensitivity pneumonitis (HP) – a type of allergic reaction to something inhaled, resulting in inflammation of the lung tissue, which is commonly associated with farmers (farmers lung) and bird keepers (bird fanciers lung).

 

This case has just come to light in the journal Archives of Disease in Childhood and dates back to May 2017. This was during a time when the industry was not as regulated as it is today, and retailers may have been stocking products that did not meet the same level of standards we adhere to at Vapouriz.

 

Public Health England continues to reinforce its position that vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking, and that smokers are more likely to quit if they switch to vaping, a position supported by Cancer Research UK, the Royal College of Physicians and many other health organisations and experts.

 

At Vapouriz, we believe in providing vapers with a safe, quality product, one that meets stringent toxicological tests set by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and conforms to TPD (Tobacco Products Directive) regulations.

 

As one of the largest e-liquid manufacturers in the UK, all of our e-liquids are produced in ISO Class 7 certified cleanrooms at our purpose-built, state-of-the-art Vapouriz Labs in Guildford, Surrey. Vapouriz e-liquids contain only food-approved flavourings, nicotine, and propylene glycol and vegetable glycerol, which are all pharmaceutical grade as defined by the European Pharmacopoeia Standard Monograph, and all sourced within the EU.

 

Equally, we recognise that it is crucial that the industry only sells vaping products to informed adults and this is why we stand by Challenge 25, a scheme that encourages anyone who is over 18 but looks under 25 to carry acceptable ID when making a purchase.

 

If you have any questions, please contact our customer service team on 0800 644 0000.

US Vaping-Related Illnesses: Our Response

Alongside our colleagues in the worldwide vaping industry, health authorities, the vaping community and impartial observers around the world, the Vapouriz Group has watched with mounting alarm at the spread of misinformation surrounding vaping and e-cigarettes following the tragic outbreak in the US of 1080 confirmed cases of vaping-related illness and reported 18 deaths*.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, alongside an FDA criminal investigation and other independent health studies, have identified the root cause of nearly all the cases as illicit, black market products reputed to contain THC – the psychoactive compound found in marijuana. Specifically, these products contain Vitamin E acetate, a cutting agent considered harmless as an oral or topical supplement but whose molecular composition is known to cause the symptoms described in the vast majority of cases when inhaled as vapour.

And yet despite these known facts, and those still emerging, the debate that has since consumed politics and the media in the US, one that cries ‘epidemic’ as it promotes a false equivalence between the safe use of regulated e-cigarette and nicotine products and illegal, toxin-containing devices, is deeply troubling. Worse, it poses a very real threat to public health by scaring smokers away from e-cigarettes and a safer alternative to cancer-causing tobacco.

The millions of smokers who have switched from cigarettes to vaping represent an enormously positive public health story that risks being ignored for as long as the media fixates on the side-effects of black-market goods that have compromised the health of an incredibly small fraction of the total vaping population. With falsehoods passed off as facts, informative content swamped by ill-informed clickbait and politicians pandering to panic rather than evidence, it has never been more important for the public to have access to both the truth about vaping and to ethical, reputable suppliers, goods and services.

At Vapouriz, nothing is more important to us than the safety and quality of our devices and e-liquids. As one of the largest e-liquid manufacturers in the UK, all of our liquids are produced in ISO Class 7 certified cleanrooms at our purpose built, state-of-the-art Vapouriz Labs in Guildford, Surrey. Vapouriz e-liquids contain only nicotine, propylene glycol and vegetable glycerol, which are all pharmaceutical grade as defined by the European Pharmacopoeia Standard Monograph, and all sourced within the EU.

When it comes to our flavours, we use only food-grade flavourings – also sourced within the EU – which are thermally stable when vapourized. We only work with suppliers who adhere to the rules set out by the Tobacco Products Directive, the regulations introduced by the EU in 2016 to enforce standards and protections for manufacturers and consumers of nicotine products such as e-liquid.

Furthermore, our rigorous standards are not unique to us alone but are a vital feature of the vaping industry across the UK and other EU countries, which is why not a single case of a vaping-related ailment that resembles those currently in the US has been recorded here.

As the USA struggles to come to terms with the results of a lack of measured oversight and enforcement of rules and standards since the emergence of e-cigarettes, the UK and Europe continue to help smokers make the beneficial switch to vaping with the full cooperation of producers and suppliers like Vapouriz. We offer our sympathy to the American victims of illicit, toxic products that harm people and taint the reputation of safe, legitimate vape goods.

Vapouriz stands in solidarity with the hundreds of ethical, hardworking US vape companies whose staff and livelihoods remain vulnerable in the current climate of misinformation and scaremongering.

The only winners from a manufactured mistrust of e-cigarettes are Big Tobacco, not the millions of smokers who could be saved from its deadly effects.

*according to CDC figures as of 10th October 2019

Visit a (virtual) Vape Shop in Kingston

While you might be used to shopping with us online, did you know we have physical stores you can visit too?

We opened in Kingston-upon-Thames in June 2016 as a hub for local vapers. It's one of our flagship VapeStore and a great place to upgrade your kit, stock up on your favourite e-liquids and speak to our experts.

We're open seven days a week and are conveniently located in the heart of Kingston Town Centre, right opposite Kingston Market.

Learn from the pros

If words like box mod, atomizer, tank and resistance all sound like gibberish to you, come and see us in store.

We have an expert team on hand to demystify the process and get you started. We can help with everything from troubleshooting to choosing the perfect setup and have a huge selection of classic and sub-ohm e-liquids to satisfy even the most particular taste palette.

One of the best features of our store is the Vapebox - it's our e-liquid tasting station where you can sample some of our bestselling juices to find the one you like.

Step inside with our virtual tour

Want to see what we have in store? Take a look around and explore our Kingston vape shop with our virtual tour.

See something you like? Navigate over to the display cases - the shopping cart icon will show you exactly what you're looking at so you can buy online.

Entrepreneurs in vaping and franchise opportunities with Vapouriz

Today (Jan 30 2017), we’re celebrating women in business and entrepreneurship with the hashtag #shemeansbusiness

A staggering 44% of women who want to set up a business look to turn their hobby into a career(1), and at Vapouriz we’re dedicated to keeping innovation and technology at the forefront of everything we do.

Franchise opportunities at Vapestore, part of the Vapouriz group, starts with you at its core; your vision, your expertise and business innovation with the industry know-how and entrepreneur skills of CEO, Brett Horth and business Vapouriz.

Not only are we in the top 10 Grocer Brand group, but Vapouriz is listed as a Top 3 independently owned UK e-cig and e-liquid manufacturer and retailer and UK’s fastest growing 2015 (Nielsen) and ECigintelligence. Vapestore is a member of the British Franchising Association, and is owned and operated by one of the most successful vaping companies in the UK, the Vapouriz Group; a multi-million-pound turnover operation with over 60 employees. We have several company-owned stores, and a number of franchises, all operating under the Vapestore banner.

Since its incorporation in 2011, Vapouriz has become one of the Top 5 bestselling vape brands in the UK’s independent retail sector, with our range of products covers starter kits, high-end sub ohm box mods, premium e-liquids and high VG e-liquid brands such as “Pure Evil” and “Pocket Fuel”.

We are proud to announce that our new Franchise Programme for 2017 has been launched, which allows others to share in our success and own their bespoke branded Vapestore. In December 2014, we opened our first vaping emporium in Guildford, and have since opened five more branches in its wake; Brighton, Chichester, Kingston and Portsmouth with our first franchise opening in Horsham in July 2016. With another Vapestore franchise due to open in Dorking in March 2017, it’s safe to say that entrepreneurship is rightfully on the rise.

We have chosen the brand name of “Vapestore” to reflect that we not only sell our complete range of Vapouriz products, but also a number of premium hardware products and e-liquids from some of the world’s top vaping brands.

The Vapestore franchise programme has been created to maximise your investment potential and give you a huge advantage by buying into a proven working business model with a built-in support system and a 100% success rate.

From initial discussions to the opening of your store, our team of business and industry experts are there to guide you through setting up and running a successful Vapestore Franchise.

Feel that this might be a sound business choice for you? Contact us today to request more information on owning a franchise of Vapestore.

 

Vapestore is Coming to Portsmouth!

Vapestore Portsmouth’s official store launch takes place this weekend! Join us at 11 Crasswell Street from Friday 18th – Sunday 20th November!

The much anticipated launch weekend will mark the opening of Vapestore’s 6th retail unit independently owned by Vapouriz Group. Located in the heart of the historic city, Vapestore Portsmouth will bring an exciting range of e-cig kits, sub-ohm hardware and e-liquids from the likes of Aspire, Kangertech, UWELL, Ruthless, Wick Liquor, Beard Vape and Vapouriz among many others.

Kicking off on Friday 18th November, the store launch will feature exciting exclusive in-store offers and promotions all weekend. These are once-in-a-lifetime exclusive launch weekend offers and there are unbelievable savings that vapers of all levels will not to want to miss out on!

You can find our freshly fitted-out store at 11 Crasswell Street PO1 1HA, nestled between Shakeaway and Greggs. Keep an eye for out for Vapestore staff donning our infamous bright green brand colours and wielding Vapestore selfie frames for your chance to appear on our social media channels!

The people of Portsmouth can expect warm and friendly service from the knowledgeable Vapestore staff who are all passionate ambassadors of the vaping community. Whether you’re considering purchasing your first e-cig starter kit or simply looking for a new e-liquid flavour for your daily vape, our dedicated staff will be happy to answer any inquiry with friendly, impartial advice.

Vapestore Portsmouth11 Crasswell Street, Portsmouth, PO1 1HA Opening Hours: Monday 09:00 – 18:00Tuesday 09:00 – 18:00Wednesday 09:00 – 18:00Thursday 09:00 – 18:00Friday 09:00 – 18:00Saturday 09:00 – 18:00Sunday 10:30 – 16:30 portsmouth@vapestore.co.uk | 0333 241 7290

Brighton Vapestore Launch

Vapestore Brighton’s official store launch takes place this weekend! Join us at 79 North Street on Saturday and Sunday 23-24 July!

Our brand new Brighton Vapestore is now open and we’re celebrating with the official grand launch weekend this Saturday and Sunday!

It’s been a busy month for Vapestore, the high street retail arm of Vapouriz Group, with brand new Vapestores opening in Chichester, Horsham and Kingston within weeks of one another. Located in the very heart of Brighton at 79 North Street, Vapestore Brighton will offer an exciting range of our own critically acclaimed Vapouriz products including e-cig starter kits, advanced sub ohm gear, e-liquids and accessories as well as a comprehensive range of third party products from our favourite vaping brands including hardware from Aspire, Kangertech and UWELL among others, as well as liquids from the likes of Ruthless, Wick Liquor, Beard Vape and many more!

Brighton Vapestore LaunchBrighton Vapestore LaunchBrighton Vapestore Launch

Vapestore Brighton opened its doors on July 4th to a friendly reception from the Brighton retail community and this weekend’s official launch event promises to be an exciting experience for seasoned vapers as well as those considering making the switch from smoking to vaping, with exclusive in-store promotions, competitions and even goodie bags for the first 100 customer purchases each day!

Brightonians can expect warm and friendly service from the knowledgeable Vapestore staff who are all passionate ambassadors of the vaping community. Whether you’re considering purchasing your first e-cig starter kit or simply looking for a new e-liquid flavour for your daily vape, our dedicated staff will be happy to answer any inquiry with friendly, impartial advice.

We’re extremely excited to be part of Brighton’s vibrant retail community and we look forward to serving the requirements of the local vaping community with freshly updated stock and competitive new offers on a monthly basis!

Brighton Vapestore Launch

Kingston Vapestore Launch

Vapestore’s first Greater London branch is now open in Kingston and we’re celebrating with our grand launch this weekend! Join us at 26 Market Place on Saturday and Sunday, 16-17 July!

Say hello to vaping, Kingston! We’re launching our first Greater London Vapestore in Kingston’s historic town centre!

Situated at 26-27 Market Place, Vapestore Kingston is part of the Vapouriz Group and launches just two weeks after we officially opened our Chichester store. As well as our popular Vapouriz product range, including our own popular hardware and UK made e-liquids, Vapestore Kingston will also feature an exciting range of third party products from some of our favourite brands. You can expect to find a great range of hardware from the likes of Aspire, Kangertech and UWELL among others and a vast range of e-liquid flavours from the likes of Ruthless, Wick Liquor, Beard Vape and more!

 

The store opened its doors to the public on Friday 27th June and our official launch will take place Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th July! The big launch will feature exclusive in-store promotions, competitions and goodie bags for the first 100 customer purchases each day.

If you’re new to vaping or considering switching to e-cigarettes, our friendly and knowledgeable staff will be more than happy to provide impartial advice on where to start. What they don't know, isn't worth knowing!

We’re extremely excited to become part of Kingston’s diverse retail community and look forward to serving the requirements of the local vaping community with freshly updated stock and competitive new offers on a monthly basis!

Chichester Vapestore Launch

Chichester — Home to the Chichester Cathedral, Fishbourne Roman Palace, Goodwood Racecourse ... And now Vapestore!

That’s right! After launching our new brand and website under the Vapestore flag, we have chosen Chichester as the first city for our new Vapestore shop.

Vapestore is part of the Vapouriz Group and will be featuring the Vapouriz range of hardware and e-liquid as well as a range of third party products, with our stores featuring popular products from the likes of Aspire, Kangertech, UWELL and many more vaping brands.

Our store opened on Friday 10th June, with a very warm reception from the vaping community of Chichester.

Chichester Vapestore LaunchChichester Vapestore LaunchChichester Vapestore Launch

Our official store launch will be on Saturday 2nd July and Sunday 3rd July, featuring exclusive promotions in store which can’t be found anywhere else and a team of knowledgeable staff who are more than happy to help. What they don't know, isn't worth knowing! We will also be having competitions and goodie bags for the first 100 customer purchases each day.

Chichester has a long history and we want to become a part of that integral history - so come visit us on the 2nd or 3rd July and get acquainted with your local Vapestore.

Chichester Vapestore Launch