Vapers Digest 1st July

Friday’s News at a glance:

EU seeks to ban flavours in heated tobacco products – The FDA’s demonization of nicotine harms consumers – Belgian authorities strong support for vaping – The EU Commissions’ misguided attacksKonstantinos Farsalinos faults WHO – FCTC Secretariat uses Australian propaganda – The UK Sets An ExampleGFN Uploaded – FDA’s Juul ban threatens harm reduction progress – The FDA and Juul are fighting over a vape banAll Hands on Deck – White House’s Omnishambles Tobacco Policy – School Official Who Searched Girls ResignsHawaii: Governor Ige Likely to Veto Vape Ban – An update on vaping and nicotine prescribing – Vaping Going Backwards Under New Aussie Government – Why nicotine is part of the solution – Scientific community focuses on THR Dr Francesca Pesola – Tobacco harm reduction is here for good – Nicotine Science and Policy Daily Digest

EU seeks to ban flavours in HTPs


The European Commission has moved forward with its proposal to implement a flavour ban for heated tobacco products (HTPs), which we first reported in March. The proposal will undergo a period of scrutiny by the Council and the European Parliament and enter into force 20 days after the publication in the Official Journal.

Announcing the move, Ms Stella Kyriakides, Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, said:

“By removing flavoured heated tobacco from the market we are taking yet another step towards realising our vision under Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan to create a “Tobacco Free Generation” with less than 5% of the population using tobacco by 2040. With nine out of ten lung cancers caused by tobacco we want to make smoking as unattractive as possible to protect the health of our citizens and save lives.”

The clear and obvious problem with this statement is that we know that harms from smoking are due to combustion, not simply the use of a tobacco product. To conflate the two is highly misleading.

Click here for the ETHRA June news roundup

The FDA’s demonization of nicotine….

Harms consumers and people who want to quit smoking – Lindsey Stroud

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues to play whack-a-mole on tobacco policies. The leading regulatory agency that oversees everything from food staples to pharmaceuticals to tobacco products still can’t understand that smoking rates are at all-time lows and continues with prohibitionist policies it likes to call “product standards.”

Earlier this year, the FDA announced new “product standards” that seek to eliminate menthol in combustible cigarettes and flavors in cigars. Now, the agency is doubling down in the form of taking on nicotine, and in doing so, is sowing nothing but confusion to the population that continue to smoke without understanding that there are less harmful forms of nicotine.

Link for EU readers


Belgian authorities strong support

Colin Mendelsohn

BELGIAN’S SUPERIOR HEALTH COUNCIL has delivered a comprehensive report in favour of vaping which is in stark contrast to the advice of Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council. It supports vaping as a safer alternative to smoking or as a quitting aid which can lead to a significant reduction in health risks.

The Council prepares scientific advisory reports to guide Belgian political decision-makers and health professionals. The report took two years to prepare and was a consensus document prepared by a wide range of experts with different views.

Belgian Health Council acknowledges harm reduction potential of vaping

The EU Commissions’ misguided attacks

On harm reduction continue – WVA

Michael Landl, Director of the World Vapers’ Alliance, commented:

“It is shocking that the EU Commission still fights tobacco harm reduction. To achieve its own 5% tobacco use target, we need as many options as possible. Vaping, nicotine pouches and heat-not-burn products all help people to quit smoking and are less harmful. The Commission systematically ignores the wealth of scientific evidence pointing to the benefits, not to mention the first-hand experience of millions of vapers. The Commission’s negative approach to harm reduction will do nothing but boost the black market and push people back to smoking.”

Europe must finally learn from its mistakes to curb smoking

Konstantinos Farsalinos faults WHO

For playing rhetoric on tobacco harm reduction – Watipaso Mzungu

Farsalinos, in his presentation at the 2022 Global Forum for Nicotine (GFN) in Warsaw, Poland, observed that the application of the strategy has been minimal and largely unacceptable by the tobacco control movement.

“Harm reduction is not just about reducing the harm from substance use, but it is also about addressing stigma, marginalization, criminalization, inequalities and oppression. This is done in an effort to protect health, dignity and liberty, including the liberty of making informed personal choices,” he said.

Vaping gaining ground around the world with over 100m embracing it

FCTC uses Australian propaganda

To influence COP NGO observers – COPWatch

Following on from our last post highlighting how the WHO has been cherry-picking countries to discuss the future of tobacco control in a secret meeting, we now find the anti-smoking anti-nicotine arm of the WHO cherry-picking information to manipulate the NGO observers to the COP.

Last week,the FCTC Secretariat sent out the email below emphasising a highly dubious review by the Australian National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health (NCEPH).

Two from Dave Cross, Planet of the Vapes:

The UK Sets An Example

A new study produced by Roger Bate for the Pacific Research Institute points to the United Kingdom as an example of how the U.S.A. should be approaching reduced risk products like vaping. Bate argues that America should legislate and tax based on the relative risk electronic cigarettes pose.

“As the federal government and states such as California consider taxing and imposing new or stricter regulations on vaping products, particularly flavoured products, Roger Bate, Ph.D. finds that there are important lessons U.S. policymakers can learn from the tax and regulatory environment in the U.K.,” says the Pacific Research Institute as it launched its new study.

GFN Uploaded

The Global Forum on Nicotine (#GFN22) tech team are working overtime to cut, edit, and upload all session materials from last week’s conference. The full list of uploaded sessions can be found below with more to come soon. From Keynote 2:

“It was fascinating to see how quickly no smoking signs were updated to include no vaping. There are also now dual smoking and vaping areas, but it makes no sense to get people who are trying to quit smoking to congregate with smokers” – Dr Mark Tyndall, infectious diseases specialist, epidemiologist, and public health physician; former Director of the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control

FDA’s Juul ban threatens harm reduction

Guy Bentley

The Food and Drug Administration has ordered all Juul e-cigarette products off the market. Juul is the most popular e-cigarette in the U.S. and has a fair claim to being the most effective product to transition smokers away from cigarettes.

Whether e-cigarettes are safer than combustible cigarettes is not in doubt. The FDA acknowledged as much when it authorized the Vuse e-cigarette product in 2021 and claims it recognizes the role these safer nicotine alternatives can play in reducing smoking. But banning Juul shows just how threadbare the FDA’s commitment to tobacco harm reduction really is.

Regulators’ Misguided Crackdown on Nicotine Products and Their Makers

FDA and Juul are fighting over a vape ban

But the role of e-cigarettes in the world of tobacco abuse is not clear-cut

On June 23, 2022, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced that all Juul products must be removed from U.S. markets. This decision essentially broadened an existing ban on teen use of the company’s nicotine e-cigarettes to include adults as well. The next day, Juul asked a federal appeals court to temporarily block the ban while Juul challenged the decision. The court agreed to the pause, and for now, Juul products are still for sale in the U.S.

Lynn Kozlowski of the University at Buffalo has been studying nicotine and cigarette addiction for decades. He explains how the recent fight over Juul products fits into the larger discussion of e-cigarettes, tobacco use and public health among adults and teens.

Why Is Vaping Attacked …

Instead of Celebrated? Interview with Dr. Bernd Mayer

All Hands on Deck

Stefanie Rossel – Tobacco Reporter

“Tobacco harm reduction: Here for good“ was the theme of this year’s Global Forum on Nicotine (GFN) conference, which took place in Warsaw June 16–18, 2022. Around 50 speakers and panelists discussed the issues that will determine the future of safer nicotine use and tobacco harm reduction (THR). The meeting was preceded by a day of satellite events and once again featured the International Symposium on Nicotine Technology, which highlighted the latest technological advances in the rapidly changing nicotine delivery landscape.

White House’s Tobacco Policy

Gets Product Regulation Wrong

Russia just invaded another country and inflation is at a forty-year high, but the Biden administration has determined that the time is right for the federal government to declare war on smokers and vapers.

On the one hand, the White House is attacking smoking by harshly restricting the amount of nicotine tobacco companies can put in cigarettes. On the other, it is also ordering via the FDA that vaping giant Juul stops selling its electronic cigarettes. The justification for that move is the allegation that teenagers are susceptible to nicotine addiction through vaping.

Official Who Searched Girls Resigns

Jim McDonald

The story of the Wisconsin school official accused of conducting illegal body searches on high school students suspected of vaping has come to an end. Suring School District Superintendent Kelly Casper has agreed to resign June 30 from her post in the small town, according to the Green Bay Press Gazette.

Casper admitted searching the female students (male students were searched separately by male staff) in January, but insisted there was nothing illegal or improper about the searches. She was assisted by a school nurse, who later reported the incident to her supervisor, explaining she thought the searches were inappropriate.

Hawaii: Governor Ige

Likely to Veto Flavored Vape Ban

Hawaii Governor David Ige has announced he will probably veto the ban on flavored vapes and tobacco passed by the state legislature in May. It is one of the 30 bills from the 2022 legislative session Ige, a Democrat, said he plans to reject.

Gov. Ige has until July 12 to make a final decision about the bill. If he takes no action, it will become law automatically. If he vetoes, the state legislature can override the action with a two-thirds vote. It isn’t known if bill supporters have the votes to override a veto, or if they would pursue an override.

Update on vaping and nicotine prescribing

Colin Mendelsohn, Carolyn Beaumont

Background: Under 2021 regulations, a prescription is required to import nicotine liquid for vaping or to purchase it from Australian pharmacies.

Objective: This article outlines 1) the latest evidence on vaping, 2) devices and liquids available, 3) how to counsel smokers about vaping and 4) how to write nicotine prescriptions.

Discussion: Vaping is a second-line quitting aid for adult smokers unable to quit with approved treatments and is the most popular quitting method in Australia. It is safer than smoking and more effective than nicotine replacement therapy.

Vaping Going Backwards

Under New Aussie Government – CAPHRA

“This latest government document on vaping makes outrageously false claims and will only cost more Australian smokers their lives,” says Nancy Loucas, Executive Co-ordinator of CAPHRA (Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates).

Her comments follow the release of the 2022 CEO Statement on Electronic Cigarettes by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC).

“Ridiculously, Australia’s Chief Medical Officer considers vaping the next biggest health issue after COVID-19. Has he ever heard of smoking which kills over 20,000 Australians every year?

Why nicotine is part of the solution

To end smoking, according to experts

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — In 1976, Professor Michael Russell, a pioneer in the study of tobacco dependence, famously said, “People smoke for nicotine but die from the tar.”

It’s the thousands of chemicals contained in tobacco smoke that make tobacco use deadly.

“This toxic mix of chemicals—not nicotine—causes the serious health effects among those who use tobacco products, including fatal lung diseases, like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and cancer,” according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), echoing Russell’s iconic words from almost half a century ago.

Scientific community focuses on THR

Through alternative solutions – such as E-cigarettes and heated tobacco

The world has understood the risks of smoking for several decades and that quitting the habit is essential to maintaining one’s good health, but not everyone can break free from the habit. Traditional cigarettes contain over 6,000 chemicals and ultrafine particles, 93 of which are on the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) list as potentially harmful. Most, roughly 80 of those listed, are or are potentially carcinogenic, with the end result remaining the same – smoking is the most important risk factor for cardiovascular disease and various forms of cancer.

And yet, despite the empirical data that reveals the risks of smoking, more than 60% of those who are diagnosed with cancer continue to smoke.

June 2022 with Dr Francesca Pesola

In the June episode Jamie Hartmann-Boyce talks with Francesca Pesola from the Wolfson Institute of Population Health Queen Mary University of London

Dr Francesca Pesola talks to Associate Professor Jamie Hartmann-Boyce about the results from the trial of e-cigarettes compared to nicotine patches for smoking cessation in pregnant women. Professor Tim Coleman discussed this study in our May 2021 podcast and the results have now been published in Nature Medicine, Hajek et al 2022 (DOI: 10.1038/s41591-022-01808-0).

Tobacco harm reduction is here for good

Josephine Chinele

Malawi: Most people have probably internalised HIV and AIDS messaging that promotes total abstinence, being faithful to one partner, or using a condom-‘Condomise’ (A-B-C).

A record of massive condom sales suggests that, in contrast to being faithful to one partner and abstaining, most people may have chosen the ‘Condomise’ option.

A similar approach to ‘enjoying’ sex without contracting a Sexually Transmitted Infection has been researched and proven that people who are addicted to smoking (Nicotine) can still enjoy the pleasure of smoking without being harmed by the tobacco.

On this Day…2021

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

What causes some people to take up smoking while many others go their whole lives without ever trying a cigarette? While race, gender, socioeconomic status, and familiarity with tobacco due to family members smoking all increase risk of initiation and use, one indicator stands out. Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are over twice as likely to use tobacco products as their mentally healthy counterparts.

Innovation in nicotine delivery tech

Seen to reduce deaths from smoking
Manila Bulletin

The revolution in nicotine delivery technology encourages millions of smokers to switch to less harmful alternatives and presents an opportunity to reduce up to 4 million deaths from smoking each year, according to a global health expert.

Dr. Derek Yach, president of the Foundation for a Smoke-Free World said during the 8th Global Forum on Nicotine on June 18, 2021 that the world is experiencing a revolution in nicotine delivery technology, as there are now more than a hundred million people using harm reduction products.

Visit Nicotine Science & Policy for more News from around the World



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