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Vape Product Sellers Targeting Kids in Thailand With “Toy Pods”

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Vape Product Sellers in Thailand Targeting Kids With "Toy Pods"

Academics  in Thailand are sounding the alarm about a new vape product known as “toy pods” which look like copies of popular cartoon characters and are marketed to school and university kids.

Srirach Lapyai, a project manager at the Tobacco Control Research and Knowledge Management Centre (TRC), stated that vape products companies have changed the appearance of their products to resemble figurines of renowned cartoon characters or cute miniatures of toys, food, stationery items, and so on.

Ms Srirach described them as the fifth generation of e-cigarettes known as “toy pods” with each containing up to 5% synthetic nicotine and producing up to 15,000 puffs. She claims that some arrive in a collection. Each may hold up to 12 toy pods of varying colors, representing distinct flavors and fragrances.

“It’s startling to see that e-cigarettes in the form of toy pods have become so popular that they’ve spread to elementary school pupils. Many first-graders were just discovered carrying them,” she explained.

Ms Srirach explained that the toy pods’ mouthpieces are made to resemble a cute figurine, making them nearly unrecognisable as ecigarettes.

According to Dr. Vijj Kasemsup, director of the TRC, these enterprises target younger customers by opening shops and running social media promotions that cater to their interests and lifestyles.

According to a recent survey, 309 internet merchants in Thailand were caught unlawfully selling “toy pods” over social media channels such as X, Facebook, and Instagram between January and February.

Vape Product Sellers in Thailand Targeting Kids With "Toy Pods"

Vape Products Can Harm Children

Dr. Vijj expressed concern that nicotine from vape products can harm children’s hearts, brain cells, memories, concentration, and respiratory systems, resulting in seizures and heart failure.

He believes the government should continue to prohibit vape products sales and imports, as well as proactively enforce restrictions against such goods.

The authorities recently discovered 70 vape businesses within a 500-metre radius of Bangkok schools and institutions. Legal action against vape product retailers is being considered in order to establish safety systems.

Over the last few years, the globe has begun to consider whether vapers and e-cigarettes are a safer option to tobacco, which has been widely documented as damaging to our health.

Authorities in the United Kingdom are prepared to ban the sale and manufacture of single-use vapes by next year, and the latest Netflix documentary series Big Vape: The Rise And Fall Of Juul addresses the different challenges.

We have seen a growing controversy about the safety of vaping in Thailand, where it is illegal but freely available.

The debate is whether vapes and e-cigarettes are as hazardous as regular tobacco products. People are also concerned about the grounds for the prohibition and whether smokers should transition to vaping for better health.

When comparing the health impacts of e-cigarettes to regular cigarettes, it is critical to recognize that both products include dangers.

Vape Product Sellers in Thailand Targeting Kids With "Toy Pods"

Vape products can be dangerous

According to the World Health Organization, tobacco smoke includes over 7,000 compounds, at least 250 of which are known to be hazardous and more than 60 of which are carcinogenic.

These substances are to blame for smoking’s catastrophic health repercussions, which include lung cancer, heart disease, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

In contrast, e-cigarettes emit no tobacco smoke. Instead, they function by heating a liquid containing nicotine, flavorings, and other compounds, resulting in an aerosol that users inhale.

While e-cigarettes do have dangers, studies have revealed that they may be less dangerous than regular cigarettes.

The Royal College of Physicians in the United Kingdom, for example, concluded that “the hazard to health arising from long-term vapour inhalation from the e-cigarettes available today is unlikely to exceed 5% of the harm from smoking tobacco”.

The relative damage of vapes vs. cigarettes has provoked various discussions in the scientific community. One thing is clear: vaping is not fully risk-free.

The aerosol created by e-cigarettes may include hazardous compounds, and long-term implications are being investigated. However, it is possible that vaping could be a less dangerous alternative for smokers who are unable or unable to give up nicotine completely.

Given the potential harm reduction benefits of vaping, one may wonder why countries such as Thailand retain strict bans on these items.

The solution lies not simply in concerns about the health impacts of vaping, but also in the larger context of regulating a rapidly growing industry. Vaping is prohibited, although these goods are widely available.

Vape Product Sellers in Thailand Targeting Kids With "Toy Pods"

The quality and safety of vaping goods

The disparity between the legislation and its enforcement raises concerns about a ban’s effectiveness in reducing vape use. Regardless of its legal status, many Thais have embraced vaping, indicating a large market for these items.

One could argue that the current restriction on vaping is unhelpful. While the government may intend to protect public health, many consumers are turning to an uncontrolled black market.

In this situation, it is difficult to control and assure the quality and safety of vaping goods. If the government were to regulate and tax vaping, it might potentially improve public safety while also raising funds for public health projects.

The situation in Thailand is not exceptional. Many countries are facing the same difficulties. In the United Kingdom, for example, policymakers are planning to ban single-use vapes by 2024, a decision that has prompted discussion among health professionals and the general public.

While the UK has been more lenient toward vaping than countries such as Thailand, the new prohibition raises issues about the rationale behind such legislation.

Concerns about health dangers, potential gateway effects to smoking for adolescents, and a desire to preserve control over the tobacco industry are frequently the driving forces behind vaping bans.

Critics of vaping believe that it may normalize smoking, and that young people who begin with e-cigarettes may eventually switch to regular cigarettes.

Furthermore, the rapid growth of new, often flamboyant vaping goods with an endless variety of flavors and styles has generated worries about their attractiveness to adolescents.

Vape Product Sellers in Thailand Targeting Kids With "Toy Pods"

Smokers transitioning to vaping

In the broader scheme of things, the question is whether smokers should transition to vaping if they wish to quit smoking for health reasons. It is critical to highlight that quitting nicotine completely remains the greatest option for health.

However, for people who are trying to stop and have been unsuccessful with other approaches, vaping may be a less dangerous option.

The vaping topic remains complicated, with scientists disagreeing on the relative health dangers. Vaping bans, such as those in Thailand and other nations, are frequently the consequence of a combination of circumstances, including public health concerns, adolescent initiation, and the larger tobacco business.

While it is critical to regulate vaping to safeguard consumers, a complete ban may not be the most effective solution. As more evidence comes out, governments should reconsider their stance on vaping and consider harm reduction as a feasible method for those who are unable to completely stop nicotine.

The CTNNews editorial team comprises seasoned journalists and writers dedicated to delivering accurate, timely news coverage. They possess a deep understanding of current events, ensuring insightful analysis. With their expertise, the team crafts compelling stories that resonate with readers, keeping them informed on global happenings.

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