TPD poses tricky problems for small vape retailers in Netherlands

The e-cigarette market in the Netherlands faces a serious challenge adapting to the requirements of the EU Tobacco Products Directive (TPD), as small specialist retailers try to cope with advertising restrictions, e-liquid regulations and age verification.

A new report by ECigIntelligence reveals that while the Dutch market is stabilising after recent shrinkage, the distribution network is weak, the number of daily vapers has fallen, and poor products and promotions in convenience stores have damaged consumer confidence.

Most Dutch e-cig retailers operate online and a rise in shipping costs also affects their profitability. In fact, adapting to the TPD is tougher for online retailers than for bricks-and-mortar shops; age verification is significantly more difficult for online companies, and with limited ability to advertise in broadcast, print or online media, these firms must rely on search engines to attract new customers.

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    Some bricks-and-mortar retail channels may also be deterring consumers. Many Dutch newcomers to e-cigarettes buy them at convenience stores, where presentation is reported to be poor and the quality of products available may lead purchasers to abandon vaping.

    Future market development will depend on growing the number of daily vapers. Recent trends suggest that while the number of occasional vapers in the Netherlands has risen, there has been a fall in those vaping daily, according to the ECigIntelligence report.

    – Albert Guasch Rafael ECigIntelligence contributing writer


    Barnaby Page

    Editorial director
    Before joining ECigIntelligence in early 2014 as one of its first employees, Barnaby had a 30-year career as a reporter and editor for newspapers, magazines and online services, working in Canada, the US and the Middle East as well as his current British location. He has edited publications covering fields including technology and the advertising industry, and was launch editor of the first large daily online news service in the British regional media. Barnaby also writes on classical music and film for a number of publications. Barnaby manages the editorial and reporting teams and works closely with the analyst teams, to ensure that all content meets high standards of quality and relevance. He also writes for the site occasionally, mostly on science-related issues, and is a member of the Association of British Science Writers.

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