Kent County Council seized a total of 431,005 illegal vapes between 1 January 2023 and 29 February 2024, which is more than any other UK council, according to a new study by Vape Superstore.

It comes after the vape supplier analysed FOI request data from UK councils between 1 January 2023 and 29 February 2024, to uncover the areas with the biggest problem with illegal vape distribution.

Isle of Anglesey County Council was identified as the second UK council with the most confiscated illicit vapes, totalling 352,704, followed by Swansea Council with 154,737.

The study found that Lancashire County Council had the most businesses stocking illegal vapes, with 132 shops in total.

While Kent County Council followed with 85 shops, and Hertfordshire County Council had 83.

Alongside the sale of illegal vapes, the requested findings also delved into how many illicit packets of cigarettes were seized in the same period.

It revealed that Carmarthenshire County Council seized the most illegal cigarettes in the UK, with a total of 160,000 packets.

The locations that make up the rest of the top ten include Kent (144,727), Hertfordshire (96,823), Gloucestershire (56,845), Swansea (54,797), Warwickshire (46,255), Lancashire (31,779), Devon (31,233), Flintshire (22,032) and Lincolnshire (14,917).

Dave Philips from Vape Superstore explained that vaping can be an effective way to quit smoking, but the influx of illegal vapes has spawned a dangerous black market that consumers aren’t always aware of.

“Our study shows that the illegal vape black market is a big concern across the UK, but particularly in areas like Kent, Lancashire, Anglesey and Swansea - to name a few. With raised awareness about the dangers of these products, we believe that consumers will be able to make better informed purchasing decisions in the future,” he said.