What is the TPD?
The TPD landed on May 20, 2016 and drastically changed the vaping landscape in the EU. A new term entered the vaping vocabulary, as everyone had to make sure their vapes were “TPD compliant.” But what is the TPD?
The Tobacco Products Directive is a “directive of the European Union which places limits on the sale and merchandising of tobacco and tobacco related products in the EU.
Since each EU country essentially has its own interpretation of the TPD, understanding all the regulations is quite complicated. But there are a number of regulations regarding vape tanks and e-liquids that apply to all EU countries and are relevant to all vapers. And as with most rushed regulations, there are loopholes that make things easier for both businesses and customers.
The key rules of the TPD include:
1) Product characteristics: New products must meet design requirements. These include bottle size (max. 10 ml), container size (max. 2 ml), child-resistant/tamper-evident packaging, and technical requirements for refill mechanisms.
2) Notification: Product information – e.g. product characteristics, formulation/toxicology and emissions – must be submitted to the MHRA via the EU CEG portal prior to product launch.
3) Packaging and labeling: There are new requirements for packaging. For example, a health warning must appear on the label and certain warnings and precautions must appear in the package leaflet. Each EU member state has its own health warning, which must be in its own language.
4) Classification of Labelling and Packaging (CLP): For e-liquids, there are separate labeling rules for mixtures that predate the new vaping laws. These include the requirement for an exclamation mark or skull and crossbones pictogram and precautionary statements.
5) Manufacturer registration: Companies must register with the state (where applicable) in order to sell directly to customers over the internet.
TPD compliant e-liquid
E-liquid manufacturers need to follow these rules in order for their products to be TPD compliant:
1）Bottle capacity must not exceed 10mL
2）Nicotine strength must not exceed 20 mg/mL
3）Bottles must have childproof caps and nozzles that limit liquid flow
4）Bottles must have nicotine warning stickers
5）E-liquid boxes must include warning and informational leaflets
The first two rules are the ones that are most relevant to customers, as they limit all e-liquid to 10 mL bottles and 20 mg/mL nicotine strength.