After puffs, disposable electronic cigarettes, time for sachets and other nicotine pearls. These new nicotine-based products have already been experimented with by some adolescents, even if they are prohibited for sale to minors. Their ease of access and the way in which they are promoted worry anti-tobacco associations.
According to a BVA survey published Tuesday by the Alliance Against Tobacco, 19% of young people aged 13 to 16 have heard of nicotine sachets and 21% of nicotine pearls. Among them, almost 1 in 10 young people have already tried them (11% for beads, 9% for sachets).
No tobacco but…
Nicotine sachets, sometimes called nicopouches or nicopods, are oral products that must be placed between the upper lip and the gum. HAS Unlike snus, theoretically banned in France, they are not composed of tobacco. As their name suggests, they do, however, contain nicotine. They are, for example, marketed under the Velo brand, a subsidiary of the tobacco company British American Tobacco. You can find them in tobacco shops and on the Internet.
Nicotine pearls are notably known under the Nicopop brand. These little colorful beads to suck on are mostly available online.
“Attractive flavors” and “aggressive marketing strategies”
According to the National Committee Against Smoking (CNCT) and the Alliance Against Tobacco, these two products, like puffs that should soon be banned, particularly target young people. In particular: “attractive aromas” and “aggressive marketing strategies” at points of sale and on the internet, estimates the CNCT.
The association notes that nicotine sachets and pearls “evade regulations” on tobacco advertising, “a loophole widely exploited by manufacturers”. For her, the advertisements praising these products “are intended to keep the consumer addicted to nicotine and above all (to) recruit new users”.
The CNCT recommends banning nicotine sachets and beads “purely and simply”, “following the example of Belgium”. And to limit the initiation of new nicotine products by young people and non-smokers, he would like a “dedicated tax category” to be created. But also that flavorings, with the exception of tobacco, be prohibited, as is advertising on all media.”
The CNCT hopes that its proposals will be included in the new National Tobacco Control Plan (PNLT), which should be presented in the coming weeks. Asked Tuesday about South Radio, the Minister of Health, Aurélien Rousseau, opened the door to a ban on nicotine sachets. “My idea is that everything that promotes access to tobacco (…), everything that makes it seem fun, we must manage to eliminate it,” he declared.