The Lords conducted a somewhat unsuccessful and inconclusive discussion on e-cigarettes, echoing many popular topics within the vaping community like the health benefits and the Tobacco Products Directive.
Some Lords, including Lord Brabazon of Tara, quit smoking thanks to vaping and defended e-cigarettes.
“I smoked for many years but I haven’t had a cigarette for 2 years because I have taken up using one of these devices.”
“Why are these products included at all in the Tobacco Products Directive because they’re not a tobacco product?”
Lord Prior of Brampton, Conservative, congratulated his colleague but argued that as e-cigarettes contain nicotine, they’re “better than cigarettes but not perfect”.
Similarly US politician Matthew Harper was outraged by non-tobacco products like e-cigarettes being categorised as a tobacco product.
Lord Naseby, Conservative, also spoke out for the health benefits of e-cigarettes, and wonders if the TPD was just another example of a badly thought through draft directive.
“These vapers ensure that there is no harmful effect from passive smoking, which you normally get from cigarettes?”
“In addition, research in New Zealand shows that they are a far better way to come off smoking than placebos or patches, which saves the NHS money,” said Lord Naseby.
Lord Pearson of Rannoch, Ukip, took the opportunity to land a punch for his party, lamented the EU’s intervention and argued that the UK are capable of looking after vaping devices themselves.
Vaping is certainly a divisive topic in the UK, but there’s no doubting the success of the e-cigarettes. Proven safer than tobacco and helping thousands quit, the future of the devices is currently uncertain.
Thankfully, almost all of those who spoke in the House of Lords accepted the health benefits of e-cigarettes.