Waitrose stop selling single-use vaping products


There’s no denying the fact that Disposable Vapes dominated the vaping market and the industry on the whole. The popularity amongst users boomed, and more people were using them than ever before by the end of 2022.

But with the popularity of them came an unprecedented amount of criticism from anti-vaping campaigners, with them being labelled as the cause of adolescents using them and beginning to form an addiction to nicotine, due to the attractive packaging and flavours. And on top of this, they are hugely damaging for the environment as a single use plastic that cannot be recycled due to containing a lithium-ion battery.

With the turn of the new year, the UK has seen it’s first major retailer in the form of Waitrose take action to stop selling single use Vaping products, in a bid to stop youth vaping as well as limiting the damage on the environment. Let’s take a look at this in more detail.

Waitrose puts a stop to the sale of single use Vaping products in their stores

Waitrose announced this week to start the new year off that they will be stopping, effective immediately, the sale of single use vaping products in all of their stores and petrol stations.

Waitrose said that they can no longer justify the sale and promotion of single-use vaping products, and immediately withdrew the two single-use vaping products they currently had on sale. These products contained Lithium and were being sold under the “Ten Motives” brand.

Waitrose commercial director Charlotte Di Cello is quoted to say:

“We are a retailer driven by doing the right thing, so selling single use vapes is not something we could justify given the impact on both the environment and the health of young people.

“We had already decided it wasn’t right to stock the fashionable bright-coloured devices which are seeing rapid growth, so this decision is the final jigsaw piece in our clear decision not to be part of the single-use vaping market”

They were also quoted to say that they acknowledge that the current market growth in Great Britain is being fuelled by the popularity of these single use Disposable vaping devices amongst people who have never even smoked a cigarette before.

Have Waitrose done the right thing?

Whilst Waitrose didn’t stock the biggest selection of single-use vaping products, the move they have executed to cease selling what they previously stocked is still pretty big in my opinion.

The acknowledgement of the problem that Disposables are having on the environment is crucial, as this is an ongoing problem that is only growing in intensity with the popularity of Disposables continuing to rise, so I think that this is a positive.

They’ve obviously made comments on the fact that young people are being enticed to start using vaping products that contain nicotine due to the attractiveness of the packaging and flavour profiles of these Disposables. But as they even said, they didn’t stock the “bright coloured devices seeing rapid growth” which is what is somewhat responsible for young people starting to vape.

I think they had already made the right choice not to stock these “colourful” devices, and they’ve only enhanced my thoughts on them by now completely stopping selling single use vaping products, regardless of the brand for the sake of protecting the environment.


Will more supermarkets follow suit?

Now Waitrose have put this in action, the question on everybody’s lips is will more major supermarkets or chains follow suit?

Personally, I don’t think so. On my visits to local big name supermarkets, I’ve seen the selection of single use vaping devices growing more and more on each visit, with a vast array of brands and flavours available to buy.

This is quite the hinderance to stand alone specialist vape shops, as people can readily buy their vaping products whilst doing their weekly shop, and have no need to go to a specialist vape shop to stock up on what they need. The other problem is, this means that people who may have never vaped previously will buy a product and not receive any advice from somebody in the know, like an employee of a vape shop, and may end up choosing the wrong product because they do not know what they need.

Back when I was manager of a vape shop, I always appreciated the customers that came to me over going to a big chain supermarket, or shopping online as they were always appreciative of the customer service I gave them and I could rest easy knowing that they are properly set up and I think this is crucial for vape shops to still get support and exist so people can get the correct help and advice rather than just a service of sale.

I might be wrong on my beliefs that no other supermarkets will follow suit with Waitrose, and I will happily hold my hands up and admit I’m wrong if more supermarkets do stop selling single use vaping products, but with the sheer volume they’re likely selling, in turn creating vast profit, I don’t think I am going to be wrong.

Dutch supers

Supermarkets in the Netherlands to stop selling Cigarettes and all tobacco related products in 2024

Travelling across Europe to conclude this article, it’s been announced that all supermarkets in the Netherlands will cease selling Cigarettes and all other tobacco related products (they class vaping products as tobacco products) effective from early 2024.

This is a huge step forward for Netherlands reaching their “smoke free” country status that they have set out to become. Supermarkets make up 11,000 out of the 16,000 licensed tobacco vendors in the country, which is absolutely insane when you think about it.

They’ve been making changes for a long time to get the country smoke free, hiking the tax price of cigarettes up by 20%, and most notably calling for a flavoured vape juice ban in the country, which after numerous delays and deliberations will be coming into effect from the 1st July 2023.

Whether this will be a positive move for the country who knows, as the flavour ban has created a serious landslide of emotion from pro vaping campaigners, and vapers who rely on using flavoured vape juice to prevent them from relapsing and going back to cigarettes.

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