Vapers Digest 15th March

Friday’s News at a glance:

The Japanese Tobacco Miracle the World is Overlooking – Banning disposable vapes across Europe – Smoking and smoking alternatives – With Youth Vaping Down, Lawmakers Are Once Again Ignoring Adults – CAP Enforcement Notice Questioned – ASH comment on Budget decisions on tobacco and vaping – UKVIA “Extremely Disappointed” With Scotland – Expanding the Drug War To Include Tobacco Would Be a Big Mistake – Zyn nicotine pouches can help smokers quit – They protest against AMLO’s reform –  TheUK’s Vape Misinformation Problem – Big Bad Wolf | Combating Bloomberg & His Media Minions

The Japanese Tobacco Miracle

The World is Overlooking – Brad Rodu

Smokers in Japan consumed 92.4 billion cigarettes in 2023 — less than half as many as they did in 2014. Since vapor products are illegal there, the impressive decline is likely due to the introduction of heat-not-burn tobacco products, which didn’t exist in 2014, but accounted for 38% of the Japanese tobacco market in 2023. Notably, this progress occurred in an overall declining tobacco market.

UK tobacco harm reduction advocate Clive Bates previously opined: “The only mystery is why the skies over Tokyo are not dark with chartered planes bringing officials from WHO, FDA, Truth Initiative, the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, the European Commission and others on an emergency mission to learn about this most extraordinary shift.

Banning disposable vapes across Europe:

What purpose does it really serve? – Tiziana Cauli

The fate of disposable vapes appears to be sealed across much of Europe, with at least four countries already determined to ban non-rechargeable e-cigarettes under the auspices of protecting young people and the environment.

Among them, France and Belgium will have to wait for a response from the European Commission, after they notified their bills containing the bans – with Belgium already having failed to obtain positive feedback in its first attempt three years ago.


Smoking and smoking alternatives

Johanna Thomson – Talking Retail

Worth £14bn each year (before tax), smoking and smoking alternatives offer significant value for convenience store retailers, not only for the revenue they bring in themselves, but also as a driver of footfall and repeat business from regular customers and the associated basket spend that goes with it.

The big news is that disposable vapes face prohibition as part of the UK government’s plan to tackle the surge in young people vaping in addition to the category’s escalating environmental impact.

With Youth Vaping Down…

Lawmakers Are Once Again Ignoring Adults – Lindsey Stroud

Not wanting to stymie the alarmism by acknowledging rapid declines in youth vaping, a handful of U.S. senators are again sounding the alarm on the so-called youth vaping epidemic. A recent letter to top executives of major convenience store chains “strongly encourage[s]” retailers to comply with federal regulations and remove all unauthorized e-cigarette products from their store shelves.

Unfortunately, much like previous efforts from a group of Democratic lawmakers who penned previous letters (including one in 2020 urging a ban on all flavored e-cigarettes), this is another futile attempt that disregards increasing data on youth and adult e-cigarette use in the U.S.

Three from Dave Cross, Planet of the Vapes:

CAP Enforcement Notice Questioned

The UK Vaping Industry Association is seeking clarification following the recent Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) enforcement notice on the prohibition of vaping ads on social media. The CAP Executive claims its advice about non-broadcast advertising does not constitute legal advice and does not bind it, the CAP advisory panels or the Advertising Standards Authority.

CAP says: “Under rule 22.12, nicotine-containing products and their components are prohibited from being advertised in certain media, unless they are licensed as medicines. In addition to our guidance, marketers may wish to refer to the Department of Health’s published guidance on the advertising of e-cigarettes.

ASH comment on Budget decisions

The Chancellor announced in the Budget that “the government is introducing a new duty on vaping and increasing tobacco duty from October 2026, raising revenue to support public services like the NHS.” This will maintain the current financial incentive to choose vaping over smoking, it is claimed. Action on Smoking and Health opposed the ban on disposables and has passed comment on Jeremy Hunt’s tax plans.

The excise tax on vaping will raise a claimed £120 million in 2026-7 rising to £445 million by 2028-9. The additional tobacco duty is said to raise a further £110 million in 2026-7 and £170 million in 2027-8 and in 2028-9.

UKVIA “Extremely Disappointed”

The UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) is extremely disappointed that the Scottish Government has published its proposed regulations which will see the sales of disposable vapes banned from April 1, 2025. The UKVIA says that the banning of the very devices that have proved to be so successful in helping record numbers of adult smokers quit, will result in serious unintended consequences.

The UKVIA believes that the direct consequences of “this ill-thought-out ban” will see smoking deaths rise as smokers who have successfully transitioned to vaping, reluctantly return to cigarettes with all the health harms, losses to the economy and burden on the NHS this will bring in its wake.

Expanding the Drug War…

To Include Tobacco Would Be a Big Mistake – Jacob Sullum

Last month, New Zealand scrapped a law that would have gradually prohibited tobacco products by banning sales to anyone born after 2008. But Brookline, a wealthy Boston suburb, will implement a similar scheme now that the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts (SJC) has cleared the way.

Brookline’s bylaw, which bans sales of “tobacco or e-cigarette products” to anyone born after 1999, is unlikely to have much practical impact, since the town is surrounded by municipalities where such sales remain legal.

Zyn nicotine pouches…

Can help smokers quit –

No less than a former top official of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) asserted that the surging popularity of Zyn nicotine pouches is helping more American smokers quit cigarettes.

“If we can convert more currently addicted adult smokers onto these modified risk products [Zyn nicotine pouches] that don’t have all the harms associated with combustion, we can achieve a substantial net public health benefit,” Dr. Scott Gottlieb, an American physician and former commissioner of the US FDA, said in an interview over CNBC.

They protest against AMLO’s reform

That seeks to ban vapes in Mexico

Dozens of people demonstrated this Tuesday in the Mexican Chamber of Deputies against the constitutional reform of the president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, which seeks to prohibit the use of electronic cigarettes either vapers.

The dissidents, from organizations such as Pro Vapeo, the World Vapers Alliance and ‘Yo Vapeo, Yo Voto’, protested in favor of regularizing these electronic devices because, they asserted, they are an alternative to avoid tobacco.

 TheUK’s Vape Misinformation Problem


Despite the overwhelming evidence indicating that safer nicotine products are significantly less harmful than smoking, vaping misinformation has stoked mistrust of safer products, most notably seen in fears surrounding EVALI and youth vaping. In this episode, Will Godfrey looks at a recent study tracking the decreasing trust in vapes amongst the general public, and the real-world consequences that vaping misinformation has on public health.

Big Bad Wolf

Combating Bloomberg & His Media Minions | RegWatch

Michael Bloomberg is the big bad wolf of the U.S. vaping industry. Over the past two decades, he’s spent nearly one billion dollars on tobacco control initiatives, funneling hundreds of millions towards misinformation and outright lies about vaping. How could the U.S. vaping industry ever hope to fight back?

Today, we’re joined by Jim McCarthy, president of Counterpoint Strategies, a Washington D.C.-based public relations and crisis management firm.

On this Day…2023

A look back at how things have moved on or otherwise….

Sweet Jesus, not plain packaging again!

Christopher Snowdon, Velvet Glove Iron Fist

Oh joy, a new study… They showed a bunch of people some mocked up e-cigarette packaging, some of which was ‘plain’/grotesque, and found that people preferred the normal packaging. Fancy that!

The people were also less likely to say they would try vaping if the packaging was ‘plain’. I suppose they would, wouldn’t they?

From this the authors conclude that there would be less underage vaping if e-cigarettes were sold in plain packs.

Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) were straight out of the blocks demanding legislation (without mentioning that two members of their tiny staff had co-authored the study).

Internal FDA Report on Smokeless Tobacco

Dashes Hopes for Vaping – Brad Rodu

Kudos to Greg Conley, director of legislative affairs for the American Vapor Manufacturers Association, for making public an internal FDA Center for Tobacco Products (CTP) report, titled, “Summary of Health Effects of Smokeless Tobacco [SLT] Products for Epidemiology Branch Product Application Review.”  Mr. Conley used a Freedom of Information Act request to obtain the 18-page document.

It is important to note the clear acknowledgment by FDA staff that SLT products are safer than cigarettes, illustrated in this executive summary passage:

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