Global eyes on Kiwi vape campaign

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AUCKLAND, Saturday: The latest marketing campaign by the largest Kiwi-owned vaping company is attracting international attention.

Alt New Zealand’s campaign, which includes late night tvcs, comes as the government is set to introduce legislation to regulate vaping, with advertising in their sights.

Launched last weekend, Alt believes its campaign is necessary to stop ‘Big Tobacco’ – now diversifying into vaping – from taking marketshare from Kiwi-owned companies like theirs.

“It could mark the last significant advertising by a vaping company in New Zealand, says Alt NZ director Jonathan Devery.

“The campaign has not only received a lot of positive attention nationwide, but has won over some significant industry voices overseas,” he says.

Two examples are UK-based Planet Of The Vapes and Vaping Post in France. Both have run lead stories on their influential websites.

“Kiwis are not rushing to lay complaints. Most simply don’t have a problem with responsible anti-smoking ads like ours.”

Replacing people holding cigarettes with vegetables, the Alt marketing campaign aims to “highlight the ridiculousness that people can’t be shown smoking nor can any health claims about vaping be made, despite its proven effectiveness as a smoking cessation tool”.

Devery and his business partner Ben Pryor agree that vape marketing restrictions are necessary and should be akin to the alcohol industry

However, they do not believe that vaping should be treated like tobacco and all marketing prohibited as smokers need to be aware that a healthier alternative is available.

“The government is currently driving a public health campaign to encourage smokers to switch to vaping,” Devery said. “Alt’s latest campaign simply reinforces that message, even if we’re forced to be somewhat imaginative.

“However, going forward why should it be solely taxpayers funding campaigns to encourage Kiwis to quit smoking via vaping? Private businesses like ours should also be allowed to spread the message in a responsible, restricted, and regulated way.”

Alt has yet to hear if the Advertising Standards Authority has received any complaints.

“What we do know is that people are not rushing to their phones or computers to lay complaints. Most Kiwis simply don’t have a problem with responsible anti-smoking advertising like ours,” says Devery.

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