The Czech Ministry of Health is preparing rules that would treat nicotine pouches as tobacco products, according to a Radio Prague international report.
Nicotine pouches are currently unregulated in the Czech Republic. “We are aware of the problems this causes,” said Ministry of Health spokesman Ondřej Jakob. “We are working on a decree that would determine the properties, the labelling and the regulation of the product. We are also working on an amendment to the current legislation.”
According to Jakob, the new decree could come into force within a few months.
Health activists have expressed concern about the growing popularity of nicotine pouches, especially among young people, in the Czech Republic. According to Marek Lžičař, an addictologist at St. Anne’s University Hospital in Brno, children can develop an addiction in just a few weeks.
“The risk of addiction is huge for anyone, both for children and adults, and it shouldn’t be downplayed,” he said. “It is definitely risky behavior that could be a gateway to the use of other tobacco products. It could also lead to the use of softer or harder drugs.”
Experts attribute the growing use of addictive substances among children to the long social isolation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.