CITY OF SAN FERNANDO — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is now monitoring stores selling vapes to minors.
DTI Secretary Fred Pascual said shops which allow minors to purchase vape products are violating Republic Act No. 11900 or the “Vaporized Nicotine and Non-Nicotine Products Regulation Act."
The act covers both physical and online stores, according to the agency.
The crackdown targets retailers who fail to verify the age of buyers and sell vape products that are packaged, labeled, presented, or marketed with flavor descriptors that unduly appeal to minors.
The agency also flags violators who used cartoons, anime, manga, animated characters, youth influencers, and personalities.
As of Tuesday, Pascual said the operation net over 18,000 non-compliant vape products valued at approximately 5.5 million pesos.
Notices of violations (NOVs) and show cause orders (SCOs) were also issued to 269 physical stores, mandating them to submit a written explanation within 48 hours from their receipt of SCOs and NOVs.
The agency said it has filed 200 formal charges with the DTI, and administrative fines have been imposed on decided cases.
Pascual said they fully support the Department of Health, Food and Drug Administration, Bureau of Internal Revenue, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Department of Education, Local Government Units, and the Bureau of Customs in ensuring that all laws on vape products are enforced.
“We are working double time on our enforcement operations to prevent the sale of vape to minors – that is our duty. Also, we will continue to work with our partner agencies and stakeholders to ensure that violators of RA 11900 and its IRR are penalized accordingly,” Pascual said.