Canada: Tobacco Market

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June 2024

In May 2018, The Tobacco Act was amended in Canada to become the Tobacco and Vaping Products Act (TVPA) in order to create a new legal framework for regulating vapes. The TVPA includes a requirement for a legislative review three years after coming into force and every two years thereafter. The First Review, with focused on vaping, was tabled in the Parliament in December 2022. The Second Review1, with focus on progress made towards achieving the tobacco-related objectives, was tabled in June 2024. The Canadian Government presents TVPA as an essential element of Canada’s goal of reducing the prevalence of tobacco use from the current rate of 12% to less than 5% of the population by 2035.

Key notes from the Second Review:

– Smoking rates for people aged 15 years and older declined from 26.8% (6.6 million people) in 2001 to 11.9% (3.8 million people) in 2022. Recording the steepest decline, smoking rate among the youth (aged 15-19) reached an all-time low of 1.6% (note that the impact of vaping not mentioned in the Report)

– Canada’s smoking population has become relatively older over time. Smokers, aged 45 years or older, made-up 35.1% of the smoking population in 2001 and 57.9% in 2022. Meanwhile, the share of young smokers (aged 15-19) declined from 8.1% to 0.9% in the same period

– Despite significant declines in smoking prevalence for the population as a whole, some communities and regions have not benefited from the same rate of decline. Indigenous people (First Nations, Inuit and Métis), Northern Regions, construction workers, people with a mood and/or anxiety disorder, lowest household income quintile and less-educated have significantly higher smoking rates when compared to the population.

– Retailers sold $11.8 billion worth of tobacco products in 2022, compared to $12.6 billion in 2020. Cigarettes and cigars represent 94% and 3% of the total tobacco market, respectively. All other tobacco products, fine-cut tobacco (RYO/MYO) and smokeless (chewing tobacco, oral snuff and nasal snuff), account for the remaining 3%.

– Cigarette sales volume declined by 42% from 2013 to 2022. The number of cigarettes sold in 2022 was 18.4 billion sticks, down 12.1% from 2021. In 2022, tobacco industry revenue for cigarettes was estimated at $4 billion, down 6.1% from 2021. Industry revenue per stick increased by ~7% to 22.1 cents in 2021 (from 20.6 cents/stick in 2021).

4 areas are identified in the Second Review for potential action:

– Prioritizing engagement, cooperation and reconciliation with the Indigenous people

– Addressing barriers to cessation (the prevalence of quitting smoking has been stable around 8%-9% over the past 20 years)

–  Strengthening enforcement, increasing transparency and addressing industry interference

– Ensuring legislative framework is responsive to modern realities (technical innovations and new products, online sales, innovative international best practices)

References:

  1. Report of the Second Legislative Review of the Tobacco and Vaping Products Act – Canada.ca ↩︎

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