Anti-smoking advocates in Canada are calling on the federal government to limit the sales of the recently approved flavored nicotine product “Zonnic” by the Department of Health, warning that this product is being marketed and directly sold to children and teenagers.
Imperial Tobacco Canada, a subsidiary of the British American Tobacco company, launched the nicotine pouch product “Zonnic” in Canada last month. The pouch contains four milligrams of nicotine and is designed to be placed under the user’s lip.
However, anti-tobacco advocates argue that given the product’s popularity in multiple countries, including the United States, and its usage among a younger demographic, the federal government should restrict its sales or even consider a temporary suspension to prevent underage individuals from purchasing it.
While Zonnic officially positions the nicotine pouch as an “adult tobacco alternative,” concerns arise due to its openly available sale in convenience stores and gas stations, potentially impacting minors.
Anti-tobacco groups such as the Canadian Cancer Society and the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment are urging the government to take immediate action. They are calling for the prescription-only sale of nicotine pouches, and they suggest that approvals for similar products should also be halted unless they follow the prescription-only model.
Imperial Tobacco has identified the product category of nicotine pouches, which it refers to as “modern oral,” as a significant growth area. During a September meeting, Kingsley Wheaton, Chief Strategy and Growth Officer at British American Tobacco, expressed the company’s excitement about the future development of “modern oral.”
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