Proposed changes to regulations surrounding the Tobacco and Vaping Products Act were revealed by Health Canada recently. Among them, changes to how retailers such as convenience stores would be permitted to advertise products. The Ontario Convenience Stores Association takes pride in working alongside government to provide practical solutions to identified problems in ways that are not detrimental to small business.
Attached is our response to Health Canada’s proposal, with our submission of what may help Health Canada achieve its goals without harming our channel and business owners.
In summary, the Ontario Convenience Stores Association recognizes the work Health Canada has done to-date with respect to regulating the steadily growing e-cigarette and vaping products market in Canada.
It is crucial that all regulatory measures captured in the Tobacco and Vaping Products Act reflect the intent to both limit youth and non-smoker uptake of vaping products while realizing their harm reduction potential by helping adult smokers switch from traditional cigarettes to vaping products.
Advertisements at points-of-sale directed at current smokers need to be permitted to ensure awareness among consumers of the availability of reduced-risk products. Ontario convenience stores have a proven track record of responsible retailing – committed to continuous improvement with respect to policies and practices aimed at keeping these products out of the hands of young people.
We’re also proud of our excellent relationships with the e-cigarette and vaping product manufacturers whose products are found in our stores. Further tightening these regulations would prevent many independent small business owners from having the opportunity to help smokers switch to a less harmful alternative while maintaining the viability of their businesses.
We look forward to working with Health Canada to help realize these outcomes and continue to demonstrate our commitment to responsibly retailing age-restricted products.
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