Thank you, Mr. Chair. I learned a tremendous amount about vaping by reviewing this bill, and I just want to highlight a few of the very important thing that I learned. The first is that young people, that is, people between the ages of 15 and 24, are taking up vaping in the way that a forest fire moves on a hot, windy day. This product was created in 2015, and there are now 5 million users in the U.S. The vaping companies have also made considerable inroads in Canada and in the United Kingdom, as well.
It is important to know that these are nicotine products and that nicotine is addictive. JUUL Labs is owned 35 percent by Marlborough, the makers of the cigarettes. The value of the company is $38 billion, to give you an idea of how much business it's doing. What JUUL labs has in mind is to create lifetime customers from people who are vaping as teenagers and, perhaps, move on to combustible cigarettes as adults. It is very, very important for us to recognize that, while there isn't a lot of scientific evidence about the effects of vaping because it is a new practise, that we err on the side of caution and ensure that we have safeguards in place that will keep vaping products out of the hands of young adults, specifically ages 15 to 24, at least until the effects of vaping are known.
What we do know already is that young adults are drawn to vaping because nicotine is in a more palatable form than smoking combustible cigarettes. Most of us have a memory of trying that for the first time, feeling very ill. Now, you can have it in mango flavour, grape flavour, strawberry flavour, all of these different flavours which make it more desirable than the straight nicotine flavour, so getting rid of flavours is really important to making this product less desirable for young people.
Another thing that is really important to know is that nicotine is nicotine, and it's addictive in any form, and it's highly addictive. As any long-term smoker will tell you, giving up smoking is an extremely difficult thing to do, and so we do not want to be in a situation of luring young people into a lifetime of addiction with unknown health effects. What we do not want to do at the end of the day is grow new smokers, especially when this is a product that really has no value of any kind and in fact may promote disease in the long run because of the heating of the carrying liquid.
I am very proud of the work that the committee has done to put limits on promotions and discounts. If you go to the Coop Gas Bar here in Yellowknife, you will see a huge display at the check-out counter for JUUL Labs. This is the kind of thing that we need to put a stop to as soon as this bill is assented to.
In addition to that, Bill 40, the idea is to ban tobacco use in public places and make it very difficult, even more difficult, for people to smoke except in their own homes. This is obviously an important way, again, of restricting tobacco use, to keep it away from children and young adults, that it is very circumscribed. I recommend that Members take note of our amendments and consent to them so that we can get a grip on this vaping explosion before it goes any further. Thank you.