Single-use vapes will no longer be sold at Superdrug stores across the UK and Ireland amid serious concerns for the environment, it has announced.


In a statement today, Superdrug confirmed it would be ‘exiting’ the single-use vape market following new research which showed almost five million are disposed of every week in the UK.


Lucy Morton-Channon, Superdrug’s head of environmental, social and governance, said the rate at which people are using single-use vapes and getting rid of them was ‘worrying and alarming for the environment’.


‘Many of these single-use vapes contain lithium batteries, which should be disposed of responsibly but many end up in landfill, and incorrect battery disposal can lead to a risk of fires,’ she said.


‘The lasting effects that single use vapes are having on the environment needs to be addressed, and I am pleased that we’ve decided to remove them from all stores.’


Superdrug’s recently appointed healthcare director Ghada Beal added that while it was the retailer’s ‘responsibility’ to provide good alternatives to cigarettes, it needed to be ‘responsible about the growing trend in disposable vapes among young people, and the lasting effect on the environment’.


Ms Beal encouraged the public to speak to pharmacy team members at Superdrug stores for advice on the different options available to help quit smoking.


Research published by Material Focus earlier this month found the number of disposable single-use vapes being thrown away had reached almost five million per week.


This was equivalent to eight per second being thrown away, said researchers who noted this was almost four times the number since similar research was conducted last year.


The news comes amid reports that the government is considering banning disposable vapes over concerns that children are becoming addicted.