Counterfeit goods are part and parcel of most consumer product industries, providing customers with an often cheaper but more likely harmful alternative to the real Mccoy. Whilst wearing fake Yeezys or a phony Rolex won’t necessarily affect your health, vaping counterfeit e-liquids or using a counterfeit vape device can have damaging and sometimes fatal consequences.
This has had a damaging effect on the vaping industry a great deal over the course of 2019, in particular across the pond in the US where a string of ‘mysterious lung disease deaths’ have been largely blamed on vaping as a whole. This has caused shockwaves worldwide and whilst government legislation hasn’t shifted in the UK, the market has felt a repercussion in public opinion and sales.
At Vape Club, we pride ourselves on being a safer and harm-reducing alternative to smoking, the leading preventable cause of death worldwide, and along with huge public health organisations, such as the NHS and PHE, see vaping as a means to quit tobacco for good. This is why we thought it would be relevant to curate a few handy tips on how to spot a counterfeit item and how to successfully vape safely. Take a look at our rundown of ideas for best practice when it comes to purchasing vape products:
Fortunately, when it comes to confirming the legitimacy of vape devices, the majority of hardware manufacturers have verification systems set in place for customers to check the authenticity of the product they’ve purchased.
Most use a simple online system where you usually type in a serial number to check whether or not the device is legitimate, whilst others have proprietary mobile phone apps which confirm if you have a fake device. Check out our helpful guide with links to the majority of the most well-known manufacturers certification web pages. If your device turns out to be fake, it is essential that you do not use it ever again.
This may seem obvious but obtaining your device from a legitimate and reputable seller or manufacturer is essential. It’s estimated that the HMRC lose over £50 million per year from illicit and fraudulent sales of vape products, whether this be from your dodgy back of the van goods dealer to huge corporations dodging tax and liability insurance just to make a quick buck, with no care for counterfeit or potentially harmful products being sold to the public. This also includes not using age verification processes to conduct their sales, therefore resulting in huge amounts of underage sales to minors which is both unethical and frightening.
Along with this, huge organisations such as eBay and Amazon, through lack of tighter control, enable grey import activity of Chinese goods (avoiding huge sums of tax in the process) and sell them without any efforts to acquire certification from the MHRA (The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency) or even an ECID number. These two authorisations are both legally needed in order to sell in the UK.
Whilst Amazon in particular are no stranger to fraudulent behaviour, what this basically means is that these products, which are willingly sold through the two biggest online distribution platforms in the world, aren’t properly checked in terms of whether or not they’re safe to use by the relevant health authorities. As astounding as that may be, it’s not surprising and ultimately puts the jeopardy of public health at risk to avoid tax, and in turn profit significantly.
It can’t be stressed enough the need to buy vape products and e-liquids from reputable vape specialist retailers, like ourselves, to guarantee legitimacy, otherwise you run the risk of causing harm to yourself and others.
Although the average cost of taking up vaping as well as buying e-liquids and coils is significantly lower than being a regular smoker, good quality equipment ultimately costs money. The saying ‘if it’s too good to be true then it usually is’, is none more appropriate than in vaping. Obviously there are exceptions, as there are numerous validated brands out there who specialise in budget-friendly vape products that are perfectly legitimate and safe to vape.
What we recommend is to do your research, read reviews of vape products from numerous trusted websites and check other sites to get a decent idea of appropriate pricing. From there you can make an informed and suitable decision on whether to purchase or not.
We hope this has helped and given you some much needed information to be able to vape safely with peace of mind. Please don’t hesitate to contact us regarding any queries surrounding counterfeit vaping or vaping in general.
Information is now coming to light regarding the recent ‘vape-related’ deaths in America. Whereas previously it was thought that vaping as a whole was to blame, it is now becoming clear that the health issues being experienced are in fact due to black market products that contain illicit and dangerous substances, you can find more information here.