Vapers Digest 21st July

Friday’s News at a glance:

No plans to make vapes prescription-only – Brexit freedoms must be used by Sunak on vaping – Journal Retracts Study – Vaping is not a gateway to smoking – Consumer Groups Respond To South AfricaCRUK Commissioning Disposables Research – UKVIA Makes LGA Comment – House of Commons – Juul Labs Submits PMTAVaping goes missing in the Spanish elections – Czechs’ nicotine pouch tax plan – Nicotine ProhibitionWhy advocates should support the right to smokeWar on E-Cigarettes – Nearly 80% of Doctors Worldwide – Tobacco Harm Reduction Group – Prohibition is a hard habit to breakNSW Greens Statement on Vaping – The cosy deals behind prescription vapingVaping on holiday

No plans to make vapes prescription-only

Storm Newton – Independent

The Government currently has no plans to make e-cigarettes prescription-only as calls mount for more restrictions on vapes in a bid to stop children accessing them.

Conservative MP Dr Neil Hudson asked the House of Commons about the “potential merits” of restricting the sale of vapes by making them prescription-only.

In a written statement, Neil O’Brien of the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), said: “No formal assessment has been made.

“There are no medicinally licensed vaping products approved by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency. As such, the Government is not currently considering making vaping products prescription-only.”

Brexit freedoms must be used by Sunak

On vaping to save lives – David Jones MP

When it comes to quitting cigarettes, one size does not fit all. That’s true at a personal level, and it’s just as valid at a national level. It’s a lesson the World Health Organisation (WHO) needs to learn.

Twenty years ago, the WHO tried to impose a rigid international template for how countries should try to tackle smoking: the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

Under the WHO treaty, participant countries were urged to treat all nicotine products as equally harmful, putting cigarettes and safer alternatives like vaping in the same bracket. This was a big mistake.


Expert Reaction

To letter to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

The letter of the Health and Social Care Committee to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, published today, makes some very sensible suggestions following a recent evidence session on Youth Vaping. The key challenge for the government is to balance the benefits of e-cigarettes for helping smokers stop using the mostly deadly of products, cigarettes, with the potential risks they have for encouraging youth vaping. While e-cigarettes confer only a fraction of the harm of cigarettes, they are not risk free, which is of particular concern if their availability results in long-term use among youth who would have never smoked.

Journal Retracts Study

That Linked Vaping to Liver Disease – Ben Adlin

A study linking the use of nicotine vapes to liver disease has been retracted after its authors failed to reply to concerns raised about the article’s methods and findings.

Gastroenterology Research, a peer-reviewed journal, formally retracted the paper on June 11, stating in a short notice that “concerns have been raised regarding the article’s methodology, source data processing including statistical analysis, and reliability of conclusions.”

The retraction, which does not specify the nature of those concerns, came nearly a year after study’s publication, in June 2022.

Vaping is not a gateway to smoking

Colin Mendelsohn

ONE OF THE MOST COMMON arguments against vaping is that it will increase youth smoking (the ‘gateway theory’). However, there is now good evidence that this is not true. In fact, vaping is REDUCING smoking rates in young people.

Young people who try vaping are also more likely to try smoking because they share risk factors that lead to both behaviours (‘common liability’). But this does not mean that vaping caused them to take up smoking. Teens who vape are also more likely to take other risks, such as smoking, drinking alcohol, drink driving, using illicit drugs and having unsafe sex. Vaping does not cause these behaviours either.

Four from Dave Cross, Planet of the Vapes:

Groups Respond To South Africa

Nineteen international tobacco harm reduction consumer groups have called on the South African government to “stop killing harm reduction” in its new Tobacco Control Bill. Representatives from the groups are asking the Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Health to embrace vaping and other alternative nicotine products as tools to combat smoking.

The proposed text of the Tobacco Products and Electronic Delivery Systems Control Bill intends to regulate alternative nicotine products and combustible products in the same manner with provisions covering extra restrictions on sale and manufacturing of tobacco and nicotine products.

CRUK Disposables Research

The Social and Behavioural Research (SBR) team at Cancer Research UK (CRUK) is commissioning work “Understanding the use and appeal of disposable e-cigarettes for adults who are attempting to or have quit smoking”. The aim is to identify how the vape products help smokers in lower socio-economic status brackets, but time is of the essence given the growing vocal opinion to ban disposables completely.

CRUK notes that disposables have boomed in the UK recently, especially with younger adults due to the low cost and ease of use. But the charity worries about “a rapid increase in disposables as the most frequently used e-cigarette product in youth in the last year”.

UKVIA Makes LGA Comment

The UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) has commented on the Local Government Association (LGA) demanding that the Government bans disposable vapes. Last month, the LGA was not suggesting a complete ban on disposables – favouring a more pragmatic approach – but this has changed in the space of a few weeks, as our article on Monday shows.

A couple of weeks ago, Councillor Linda Taylor, the LGA’s environment spokesperson, told journalists: “Single-use vapes, just like any other item of hazardous waste, need to be properly classified and producers must take responsibility for the litter they create. …”

House of Commons

Vaping and tobacco harm reduction issues have been discussed in the House of Commons. Lyn Brown MP raised the subject of children and vaping’s impact on their schoolwork. Rachael Maskell MP wants plain colours for products, plain packaging, and a ban on vapes in cars. Gregory Campbell MP asked about vaping being included in the plans for Smokefree 2030 while Matthew Offord wanted more details regarding the Government’s ‘Swap to stop’ scheme.

Lyn Brown, the Shadow Minister for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, asked the Secretary of State for Education what assessment has been made of the effect of vaping on children’s concentration and attainment at school.

Juul Labs Submits PMTA for 2G Device

Jim McDonald

Juul Labs is asking for FDA authorization to sell a second-generation device in the United States nearly two years after the product launched in the United Kingdom as the JUUL2. Juul announced today it has submitted a premarket tobacco application (PMTA) for the device and tobacco-flavored refill pods.

Juul will not be able to sell the new device in the U.S. until it receives a marketing granted order (MGO) from the FDA. Per the FDA Deeming Rule, all products made with tobacco-derived nicotine that were not on the market as of Aug. 8, 2018 must be authorized by the FDA before they can be sold. The PMTA for the company’s original JUUL device remains under FDA review three years after being submitted.

Vaping goes missing in Spanish elections

Alberto Hernandez

Despite strong tobacco control efforts, Spain continues to be one of the European countries with the highest number of smokers. According to the latest Eurobarometer, which examines the attitudes of Europeans towards tobacco and e-cigarettes, in 2021, the smoking rate among Spanish adults was 24%, a figure slightly lower than the European Union average, which then stood at 25%, and slightly higher than in countries such as Germany, Italy, Portugal, and the United Kingdom. Due to the high prevalence of tobacco consumption, more than 50,000 people die each year in Spain from smoking-related diseases, a statistic that could easily be addressed by the application of sensible tobacco harm reduction policies.

Czechs’ nicotine pouch tax plan


The Czech Pirate Party, a member of the ruling five-party coalition government, has voiced opposition to the cabinet’s proposal to impose a tax of CZK3.45 (€0.14) per g on nicotine pouches and “other nicotine products”.

The bill drawn up by the Ministry of Finance also proposes a tax rate of CZK10 (€0.42) per ml on e-cigarette refills regardless of nicotine content.

Currently under debate by the Chamber of Deputies, the lower chamber of parliament, it represents “the most significant part of the measures to reduce the structural deficit of the state budget and consolidate public finances,” according to the accompanying documentation.

Nicotine Prohibition Is the Goal…

Of Truth Initiative’s “Gamechanger” – Marc Gunther

Truth Initiative, a leading anti-smoking nonprofit, has released a report laying out its “strategy to move toward the end of commercial tobacco and nicotine use.”

You read that right… Truth Initiative, according to its July 12 report, ultimately wants governments to ban not just combustible cigarettes but all commercial nicotine products.

Gone would be nicotine vapes, which have helped millions of people in the United States quit smoking.

War on E-Cigarette…

Will Lead to More Smoking of Traditional Cigarettes

The longstanding and ongoing crusade the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been waging against e-cigarettes is a classic case of failure to see the forest through the trees.

The purpose of e-cigarettes, the practice more commonly referred to as vaping, is to get people off of traditional cigarettes that cause lung damage and addiction. For some, if vaping is banned, they will go back to traditional smoking which will defeat the whole reason that vaping was created – to help get people off of harmful smoking.

Why vaping advocates should….

Support the right to smoke – Simon Clark

Here’s my short introductory speech at Boisdale this week. Readers of this blog have heard it all before so apologies for being predictable …

Good afternoon everyone. Thank you for joining us for the 2023 Forest Lunch & Awards.

In a few minutes I’m going to introduce our special guest speaker, but first, a quick reminder of where we were when I stood here 12 months ago.

Nearly 80% of Doctors Worldwide…

Mistakenly Believe Nicotine Causes Lung Cancer

Sermo, an independent platform and leader in actionable healthcare professional insights, surveyed more than 15,000 doctors online in 11 countries (China, Germany, Greece, India, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Japan, South Africa, United Kingdom, and the United States).

While an average of 87% of doctors participating in the Doctors’ Survey at least moderately agree helping patients quit smoking is a priority, it’s troubling that on average 74% incorrectly believe nicotine causes a range of illnesses from lung cancer to COPD.

Tobacco Harm Reduction Group

Supports Letter From Leading Health Experts To Australian MPs

Nancy Loucas, Executive Coordinator of the Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates (CAPHRA), expresses strong support for the letter addressed to Australian Members of Parliament (MPs) by Colin Mendelsohn and 45 other leading health experts – including leading researchers from New Zealand.

The letter, which can be found at, highlights the importance of evidence-based policies and the need to prioritize harm reduction strategies in tobacco control.

Prohibition is a hard habit to break

How should governments best protect consumers from their own, potentially risky choices? In SA, the answer increasingly leans towards prohibiting or severely restricting access to products deemed to be a risk to human health, but this approach is not without its own risks.

The most obvious of these is the well-established principle that prohibition can have the opposite of its intended effect — fuelling an explosion of illicit trade in the banned substance as it did in the US in the early 20th century with the prohibition of alcohol and in SA during the Covid-19 bans on alcohol and tobacco sales.

Fake Pharma –

The cosy deals behind prescription vaping

Prescription vaping was a lie. It was designed to shut out independent vape stores and create a monopoly for a handful of pop-up pharmaceutical companies.

Over the next three weeks, we’ll be exposing these companies and the people behind them.

And we will demand the government take action – to stamp out practices that put profits before people’s health.

Remember, prescription vaping was pushed by organisations like the RACGP as far back as 2019.

NSW Greens Statement on Vaping

Vaping has exploded in popularity in the past decade, particularly among young people. After states and territories banned recreational nicotine vapes in an attempt to curb the problem, it gave rise to a black market for vapes. As the black market expanded, it offered products with unknown ingredients and increasingly dangerous levels of nicotine, posing risks to people of all ages.

Earlier this year, the Federal Government announced a funding and legislation package to “stamp out” vaping to control importation, contents and packaging, including a ban on recreational vaping and non-pharmaceutical vape imports.

Vaping on holiday could see you jailed …

For up to 10 years

Vaping on holiday could see you hit with a huge fine, or even jailed, with strict rules in place in destinations popular with UK holidaymakers. Vapes retailer Vape Club is warning Brits who travel with vapes or e-cigarettes to check for any restrictions on the devices at their destination.

The most serious punishments are in the popular destinations of Thailand, Singapore and Australia. Unsuspecting tourists in Thailand could be fined up to 30,000 baht (around £700) or imprisoned for up to 10 years. In Singapore, possessing an e-cigarette could mean a fine of S$2,000 (about £1,200).

On this Day…2022

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

Why are we waging a war on e-cigarettes

When they help smokers quit? – Dr Garrett McGovern

THE JOINT COMMITTEE on Health published its report this week on pre-legislative scrutiny of the Public Health (Tobacco and Nicotine Inhaling Products) Bill 2019. A number of recommendations were made including a ban on all flavours added to electronic cigarettes (other than tobacco flavour).

The rationale given was that flavours attract young people and that removing their availability would be less appealing to adolescents and this would curtail their use.

The report also states that “tobacco costs the Irish exchequer €10.6 billion every year and that 6,000 deaths a year are caused as a result of smoking”. Nobody can argue with those eye-watering statistics and every effort should be made to reduce smoking harm to all of our citizens.

Is Public Health Guided by Ethics?

Kevin Crowley, Vaping Links

Is “public health” guided by a code of ethics? Do they manufacture fear, utilizing a ‘greater good‘ behavioral “science” theory as form of social control? Is adding ‘we can all agree’ to narrate manipulate public opinions changing health outcomes for the public at large?

Have expectations vs reality concerning what’s ‘best for you’ reared their ugly head(s)? Over time – trust, and the morality factor public health thrives on – had to come to light, eventually.

Lets see if I have this right: #Science is science. Junk science isn’t science. Correlation isn’t science, pseudoscience isn’t ‘science’. Science-based isn’t science, behavioral science is pseudoscience, “trust the science” means there was no science, depending on someone’s interpretation, and eventually, presentation with a long silent wink of encouraged speculation.

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