AUTHORITIES are investigating the origin and intended recipient of an air freight consignment found to contain 18,000 vapes.

Australian Border Force officers intercepted the shipment on 15 March. The consignment, declared as small clothing items, contained about 2.7 tonnes of disposable vaping products.

ABF estimates the value of the haul, bound for Sydney streets, to be about $540,000.

The items will be sent for destruction in the coming weeks, with inquiries into the origin of the consignment and the intended recipient continuing.

ABF Aviation Goods Superintendent Asha Patwardhan ABF prevents the importation of a range of illicit goods, and can adapt quickly to detect different methods of concealment.

“We are seeing individuals voluntarily surrender disposable vapes at the border. I encourage anyone travelling into Australia to use the surrender bins to dispose of any vapes prior to them being seized by our officers.

 “In saying that, combatting vaping is a complex problem and one that is being fought across many fronts. This problem is more than just enforcement, it is a whole of societal issue – health, education, environmental.”

Between 1 January and 29 February 2024, about 350,000 vapes were seized by Australian Border Force officers nationally, with the assistance of our federal partners at the Therapeutic Goods Administration and state health departments.

From 1 January 2024, the importation of disposable vapes was prohibited, subject to very limited exceptions.

This ban applies to disposable vapes irrespective of nicotine content or therapeutic claims. From 1 March 2024, this was expanded to include the importation of all non-therapeutic vapes.