Note: This advice is given by the CAP Executive about non-broadcast advertising. It does not constitute legal advice. It does not bind CAP, CAP advisory panels or the Advertising Standards Authority.
Section 22 of the CAP Code concerns the regulation of marketing communications for electronic cigarettes. For the purposes of this Section, an “electronic cigarette” is any product intended for inhalation of vapour via a mouth piece (‘vaping’), or any component of that product including, but not limited to, cartridges, tanks or e-liquids. The rules apply to any ad for e-cigarettes or related products, including e-shisha and e-hookah products, regardless of whether they contain nicotine.
The rules in Section 22 are designed to ensure responsible advertising of electronic cigarettes and cover both the content and targeting of ads.
For detailed guidance on certain requirements of the Code when advertising e-cigarettes, please see the relevant AdviceOnline articles below, which provide advice on;
- The prohibition on advertising unlicensed nicotine-containing e-cigarettes and their components in certain media
- The issue of indirect promotion of unlicensed nicotine-containing products
- Distinguishing between factual and promotional information about unlicensed nicotine-containing products e-cigarettes in non-paid for space online under the marketer’s control
- General requirements, including the need to be socially responsible and that ads must not mislead consumers
- Age-restrictions that apply to ads for e-cigarettes, both in terms of the content and placement of ads
- Making health or medicinal claims
- Ads by public health bodies which refer to e-cigarettes
Marketers are also advised to read the rules in Section 22 in full, which cover further content requirements and prohibitions, such as the need for ads to state if a product contains nicotine and to not encourage non-smokers or non-nicotine users to use e-cigarettes.