Vapers Digest 21st June

Monday’s News at a glance:

The Global Forum on Nicotine – GFN Focuses on Harm Reduction – Foul Play in New ZealandTwo Federal Agencies Aimed at Protecting Persons, Two Different Approaches to Harm Reduction – Legalising snusNuances of the flavoured vaping debate explained – Health Canada abdicates its responsibility – E-cigs vs Covid: never mind the science – Wrong information deters smokers from switching – Africa: Can Tobacco Harm Reduction Make its Way Out of Controversy?Nicotine Science and Policy Daily Digest

The Global Forum on Nicotine

Dave Cross, Planet of the Vapes

The Global Forum for Nicotine hybrid live/online conference took place in Liverpool over the 17th-18th June where the audience was joined by 1100 participants from 87 countries. They heard experts say that public health and tobacco control must unite around common goal of ending smoking.

Amid a packed and varied programme, the message from the 30 speakers who joined the Global Forum on Nicotine 2021 in person or online was very clear. Policymakers in public health and tobacco control need to listen to both the science on tobacco harm reduction and the experiences of consumers who are benefiting from it every day; ideology must be set aside to prioritise progress towards the common goal of ending smoking.

GFN Focuses on Harm Reduction

Tobacco Reporter

Policymakers in public health and tobacco control need to listen to both the science on tobacco harm reduction and the experiences of consumers who are benefiting from it every day. Ideology must be set aside to prioritize progress toward the common goal of ending smoking. Those were some of the messages conveyed during the Global Forum on Nicotine (GFN), which took place June 16–18 in Liverpool, U.K.

Gerry Stimson, Emeritus Professor at Imperial College London and a founder of the GFN, said that much of what she has seen and heard during the event was encouraging.

“It feels as though we’re on the right trajectory,” he said. “Consumers all over the world are becoming aware of the opportunities offered by safer nicotine products, and innovations in the market will, I believe, lead to the eventual obsolescence of combustible cigarettes,” she said.


Foul Play in New Zealand

Marewa Glover

Annoyance was building in me as I watched my daughter’s weekend netball game. The Centre was everywhere at once, yelling for the ball to be passed to her. Her teammates would turn to throw, then stop, confused – why call for the ball when you’re not clear? Luckily, they assessed that a pass to their Centre would be a pass to the other team. Just before earning a penalty for holding the ball too long they find someone else to pass to and the game moves on. It was a short distraction but repeated too often and it can cost more than a few goals.

Clearly, I’m working too much if even a netball game presents a metaphor for what’s happening in tobacco control!

Harm reduction offers an efficient, fast way to reduce smoking-related harms. Using netball as an analogy – this is when a team gets the ball and they pass it cleanly from one player to the next down the court.

Two Federal Agencies…

Aimed at Protecting Persons, Two Different Approaches to Harm Reduction
Lindsey Stroud – Townhall

The idea of reducing the harm associated with risky behaviors and/or products isn’t Éa new concept. For centuries man has attempted harm reduction by lowering the risk of sexual relations with condoms. And, from oven mitts to helmets, many more innovations have come about in light of risky behaviors. Interestingly, some harm reduction efforts have come with plenty of naysayers.  Some innovations have found friends and foes in taxpayer-funded federal agencies meant to protect Americans.

The history of seat belts and air bags in automobiles and the emergence of tobacco harm reduction products represents two very different ideas to reduce harm.  For seat belts, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) overshot the mark by attempting to mandate interlock mechanisms that would require the driver be belted prior to starting the car.

Could legalising snus …

Tap into a huge potential for smoking cessation? – Barnaby Page

Two startling statistics emerge from a recent survey of smokers in Europe conducted by ETHRA (European Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates): nearly one in three (31%) of current smokers would be interested in trying snus if it became legal, but less than 3% are actually snus users.

Given the almost incontrovertible evidence from Sweden – the only EU country where snus is legal, for idiosyncratic historical reasons – of the oral format’s success in reducing tobacco-related disease, this huge potential demand seems to represent a huge public health opportunity.

Nuances of the flavoured vaping debate

European Scientist

A recent study from the Yale School of Public Health (YSPH) has suggested that banning the sale of flavoured vaping products can cause higher rates of cigarette smoking among teenagers. The findings come at an especially pertinent moment, given the intense discussion in Europe surrounding e-cigarettes and the possibility of banning flavours. The Netherlands, in particular, is planning to ban e-cigarette flavours, despite a strong public backlash – a decision which could cause far-reaching repercussions in the bloc and beyond.

An intense debate has swirled around e-cigarettes since the devices came onto the market. There has been a fair amount of fearmongering that vaping could act as a gateway to the far more dangerous pastime of smoking cigarettes.

Health Canada abdicates its responsibility

To protect the health of ALL Canadians – Rights 4 Vapers

Canadian vapers and smokers have been abandoned by the federal government. The new proposed regulations that will ban all flavoured vapour products will make these products less appealing to smokers looking for a reduced harm alternative to smoking and drive current vapers back to smoking.

“Health Canada is willfully making a proven tobacco harm reduction tool less appealing to smokers and vapers,” said Maria Papaioannoy, spokesperson for Rights4Vapers, Canada’s largest vaper consumers’ rights organization. “It is putting vapers and smokers who are looking to quit at risk by removing products from store shelves that have helped millions of Canadians throw their cigarettes away for good.”

E-cigs vs Covid: never mind the science…

Let’s all just follow our instincts instead – Aidan Semmens

Since the global outbreak of Covid-19, we have heard a great deal from politicians about “following the science” – a sound principle those same politicians often seem to have trouble sticking to. Even before the pandemic, of course, the word “science” was frequently invoked to justify knee-jerk or emotional responses to vaping – so how closely are the opinion-formers and policymakers following the science now?

Arguments for or against the proposition that smoking or vaping is a risk factor for Covid have abounded. Most, no doubt, have said more about the speaker’s existing attitude than any medical reality.

Wrong information deters smokers

From switching to better alternatives

Advocates of tobacco harm reduction (THR) urged adult smokers to discern the science behind non-combustible alternatives as misleading and false information may push them away from switching to better nicotine alternatives like vapes and heated tobacco products (HTPs).

“The perception of harm from vaping is not consistent with the scientific evidence. Local public health experts should take the lead in providing Filipino smokers who cannot or do not want to quit smoking by themselves or with currently-approved methods with accurate scientific information on e-cigarettes and other better nicotine alternatives,” Clarisse Virgino, Philippine representative to the Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates (CAPHRA) said.

Africa: Can Tobacco Harm Reduction …

Make its Way Out of Controversy? – Marie Camara

The Global Forum on Nicotine (GFN) took place in Liverpool on June 17th and 18th, 2021.
It was the eighth edition of the conference, themed “The future for nicotine”. Speakers and panelists from all over the world were invited to discuss safer nicotine use and tobacco harm reduction.

Tobacco harm reduction is known as a public health strategy to reduce health risks and diseases related to tobacco. Its principle relies on the fact that a large number of smokers who want to quit fail to succeed. Thereby, alternatives have emerged these lasts years, notably innovative ones such as electronic cigarettes and heated tobacco. Tobacco harm reduction is viewed by those who advocate for it, as a pragmatic approach to reducing the harm of smoking related disease and thus, saving millions of lives.

On this Day…2020

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

The Belgian government…

Is making a huge mistake by considering e-cigarettes to be as harmful as conventional cigarettes

ETHRA is delighted to publish this English translation of an article by Frank Baeyens, professor of psychology at the KU Leuven in Belgium and ETHRA scientific partner. This translation is for the French version, published in DH:
“Le gouvernement belge fait une grosse erreur en considérant que la cigarette électronique est aussi nocive que la cigarette classique”

A shorter Flemish version was published in HLN (paywalled):  “KU Leuven-professor over anti-tabaksdag: “Cordon sanitair rond nicotine helpt volksgezondheid niet vooruit. Overheid moet e-sigaret actief promoten”

Australia to ban e-cigarette imports

Christopher Snowdon, Velvet Glove Iron Fist

Just when you think that Australia’s policy on vaping couldn’t get any more stupid…

To reduce the risk to public health through addiction to nicotine and nicotine poisoning, the Australian Government intends to ask the Governor-General in Council to make regulations from 1 July 2020 prohibiting the importation of e-cigarettes containing vaporiser nicotine (nicotine liquids and salts) and nicotine-containing refills unless on prescription from a doctor.

Domestic sales are already banned, leaving Australia’s 300,000 vapers dependent on mail order sales from abroad. As the Australian Tobacco Harm Reduction Association says…

Michael Russels minnepris på GFN 2020


Louise har vært en bauta i miljøet i en årrekke, en ildsjel for tobakks skadereduksjon. Hun har hatt sitt virke ved Leicester Stop Smoking Service.

Nikan har møtt henne ved flere anledninger tidligere på GFN og vært imponert over hennes tålmodighet og milde vesen.
Selv om hun har gått over i pensjonistenes rekker tar hun fortsatt freelanceoppdrag.
Hun er et ja-menneske, og da Nikan spurte om hun kunne innlede til debatt for oss under Arendalsuka var det ikke nei i hennes munn. Dette ble dessverre avlyst av naturlige årsaker, men vi håper å se henne i Norge neste år.

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