Italian Tobacco Retail Association Calls for Banning E-Cigarette Online SalesArvin Peh
According to the Italian news website sigmagazine, Mario Antonelli, President of the Italian Tobacco Association, gave a comprehensive analysis of the 21st-century tobacco industry at a meeting of the Federation of Italian Tobacco Retailers (FIT).
According to Italian news website sigmagazine, during a conference held by the Federation of Italian Tobacco Retailers (FIT), Mario Antonelli, the Chairman, provided a comprehensive analysis of the 21st-century tobacco industry. Antonelli stated that FIT supports the government’s implementation of a ban on remote sales of e-cigarettes. He further emphasized that if retailers fail to properly dispose of disposable products, they will face administrative penalties, and improper disposal could result in criminal penalties.
Antonio also extensively discussed the tobacco product known as e-cigarette. Despite initial skepticism, supporters of e-cigarettes have gradually gained the upper hand over the years, to the point where even the small industry association that initially supported the spread of e-cigarettes has now joined FIT.
Calling for stronger regulation and control of e-cigarettes
According to Anthony, e-cigarette specialty stores are gradually being replaced by tobacco retailers.
Antonelli believes that the current market is divided into three distribution channels, namely e-cigarette specialty stores, online retailers, and tobacco retail stores.
Despite intense competition, tobacco retail stores remain the preferred purchasing location for approximately 60% of e-cigarette consumers. He believes that retailers need to maintain a professional level and continuously learn and develop in this market. Additionally, retailers need to defend physical sales channels, which are currently being compromised by illegal online networks.
“Online sales have exposed numerous loopholes, prompting lawmakers to take action to safeguard legality and public health, particularly the well-being of minors. It is now time to shut down these loopholes.”
He also stated that 40% of users purchase illegal products online. It has become increasingly difficult to restrain online channels, which even the Italian regulatory authorities themselves have acknowledged. The Antonelli Association supports the implementation of a remote sales ban.
“We will propose and support a ban on remote sales in various institutions in Italy and Europe.”
He states that this measure is now highly necessary in order to protect consumers and physical retail networks. He gives the example that if minors can freely purchase nicotine products online beyond the regulated limits, then strict limitations on nicotine content in e-liquids will be rendered meaningless.
Strengthening the recycling of disposable e-cigarette devices and establishing strict measures.
Antonelli also expressed his views on disposable products, stating that this category has already captured a significant share of the market.
He promises that physical retail networks of tobacco retailers will become collection points for abandoned e-cigarette devices.
“We have partnered with the major distributor Logista and have also connected with the Italian Department of Environment and Electronics. Our physical network will serve as a model for properly handling waste products and effectively showcasing the circular economy. Selling these products also entails taking on the responsibility of participating in their disposal.”
Anton hopes to reach an agreement in the coming days, aiming to minimize administrative procedures and associated costs.
He believes that this agreement reached will be in the interest of everyone.
“If recycling is not carried out, administrative penalties will be imposed, while improper recycling and disposal will result in criminal penalties.”
Given that e-cigarettes do not have a fixed price similar to traditional tobacco, he also urged fellow colleagues:
“We are ready to support sustainability through concrete actions, as this also means we will be giving ‘core’ value to our physical sales network.”