The Department of Health (DH) today (November 24) appealed to the public not to buy or consume two liquid products intended for use with electronic nicotine delivery systems, commonly known as e-cigarettes, as they were found to contain undeclared nicotine.
During DH's market surveillance, samples of two products "Black Note forte" and "Black Note sonata" were purchased from a retail shop in Tsuen Wan for analysis. Test results from the Government Laboratory revealed that the samples contained nicotine, a Part 1 poison under the Pharmacy and Poisons Ordinance (Cap. 138).
The DH conducted an operation with the Police against the above retailer today. During the operation, a 41-year-old man was arrested by the Police for suspected illegal possession of Part 1 poisons and unregistered pharmaceutical products.
The DH's investigation is continuing.
According to the Ordinance, nicotine-containing e-cigarette products are classified as pharmaceutical products requiring registration with the Pharmacy and Poisons Board of Hong Kong before they can be sold in Hong Kong. In addition, Part 1 poisons can only be sold at pharmacies under the supervision of a registered pharmacist. Illegal sale and possession of Part 1 poisons and unregistered pharmaceutical products are criminal offences. The maximum penalty for each offence is a fine of $100,000 and two years' imprisonment.
Members of the public who have purchased the above products should stop using them immediately and consult healthcare professionals for advice if they are in doubt or feeling unwell after use. They can submit the products to the DH's Drug Office in Room 1801, Wu Chung House, 213 Queen's Road East, Wan Chai, during office hours for disposal.
Smokers are advised to quit smoking for their own health and that of others. They are encouraged to make use of smoking cessation services through the DH's Integrated Smoking Cessation Hotline (1833 183). Information on smoking cessation can also be obtained from the DH's Tobacco and Alcohol Control Office website (www.taco.gov.hk).
Reprinted from HKSAR Government: