Advertising watchdog opens probe into Instagram vape ads following Telegraph investigation

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A spokesman for the ASA said: “We have now launched formal investigations into each of the ads. We will publish our findings in due course.”

John Dicey, the CEO of Allen Carr’s Easyway smoking cessation clinics, warned that promotions featuring young people could project a “sexy, young, aspirational view of vaping” to an underage audience.

He said: “It’s really taking the place of the old cigarette adverts in 1950s, 60s, and 70s, using the exact same techniques.

“Youngsters believe e-cigarettes are not particularly harmful or addictive, but they always aspire to move on to the next level – the inclination is to move on to the “hard stuff” – cigarettes.”

In recent years e-cigarettes have been seen as a less harmful alternative to smoking, with some experts arguing they should be made available on prescription to people trying to quit.

However, a report from Public Health England earlier this year also showed that the number of children and teenagers trying vaping has doubled in five years.

Around one in six children aged between 11 and 18 has tried e-cigarettes, with many saying they liked the flavours.



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