Following the flavor ban in Nova Scotia Canada on April 1, 2020 cigarette sales have seen an unprecedented spike. The Canadian Vaping Association (CVA) repeatedly warned the Government, “banning the sale of flavoured vapour products would cause a sudden increase in tobacco use.” The CVA was correct as Mike Hammoud, President of Atlantic Convenient Stores Association has said, “vapers have already begun switching from vaping to conventional cigarettes.” Along with the statement by Mike Hammoud, a new pole from Abacus Data shows that about 29% of the vaping population of Nova Scotia is at risk for returning to cigarettes. Nova Scotia Canada cigarette sales increase due to the passed legislation.
Tobacco sales had been in decline for a decade and due to the prohibition on flavors, it has directly affected smoking rates in Nova Scotia. “This is something that has kind of came out of nowhere for us on the scale of seeing such an increase in cigarettes,” said Hammoud. In spite of considerable amount of evidence presented to the government showing that flavor bans harm smokers, Nova Scotia continued with its horrible regulation. At the time of the legislation was passed, law makers were bombarded with misinformation and misrepresented data. The flavor ban fails to balance youth protection with adult harm reduction and we are unfortunately seeing the consequences of the failed regulation. Due to the flavor ban and excessive taxation, many vape shops in Nova Scotia have already closed.
Darryl Tempest the Executive Director of the CVA said, “It is our hope that Nova Scotia reviews the polling data and comes to understand the consequences of overly restrictive regulations. There was significant pressure to act and we believe this led to rushed industry regulation that failed smokers and public health. Since that time, the science to support vaping as an effective harm reduction tool has continued to grow. The recent polling, tobacco sales data and the body of research supporting vaping paint a clear picture that Nova Scotia has made a mistake.”