Vapers Digest 22nd March

Friday’s News at a glance:

UK policy on tobacco and vaping – UK Tobacco & Vapes Bill 2024 – MPs should not lose sight of the benefits of vaping – Can vaping cause changes in our cells? – Price increase will boost black market – Vapers Protest Mexican Congress – Councils Disinterested in Recycling – Re-evaluate WHO FCTC Involvement – Happy Birthday Smoke Free Sweden – UKVIA Responds to Criticism – Spanish vapers ignored by Ministry of Health – International Health Experts Condemn Poland’s Approach – Heated Tobacco Products – Utah Governor Signs Flavor Ban – Solicitor General Takes Vaping to the Supreme Court – Nanny State Australia Has a New Enemy – Australia to ban vapes in ‘world leading’ new law – Vaping Regulations Cost Lives – The Case of Dr Kgosi Letlape

UK policy on tobacco and vaping –

A muddle and a mess – Clive Bates, The Counterfactual

The government is squandering a public health leadership position with populist but counterproductive measures to address smoking and vaping. Its flagship measure on smoking misses the point. Its measures on vaping will slow down progress on smoking. It has not taken the measures that would make a difference.

The government set a “smoke-free” goal to reduce smoking to below 5% by 2030 [briefing here]. This is a good idea. It would always be a challenge to achieve this, and it requires an acceleration of progress for the remainder of the decade. But it would inevitably rely heavily on smokers switching from smoking to safer alternatives, such as vaping, nicotine pouches and smoke-free tobacco products. Instead of going all-in on promoting switching, the government has instead introduced a pointless but controversial headline measure on smoking, the Smoke-free Generation, and a range of restrictive and punitive policies that will suppress the uptake of vaping by smokers.

UK Tobacco & Vapes Bill 2024

What It Means For Vapers – Michelle, ECigClick

Today the UK Government published their Tobacco & Vapes bill 2024 and it is not great news for vapers.

However as it stands this still has to be passed through parliament and further consultation and analysis are apparently to be held. In the document the government say about the implementation…

You can read the bill in full here:

Also there is a summary with regard to vaping here:


MPs should not lose sight …

Of the benefits of vaping – Gareth Johnson

Gareth Johnson is the MP for Dartford and chairs the newly launched APPG for Responsible Vaping

Most will agree that children should not be vaping and that those who have never vaped should not start. However, we must ensure that any future regulatory regime is proportionate and does not hamper the benefits that vaping can bring to helping adult smokers stop smoking.

With the publication on Wednesday of the Tobacco and Vapes Bill, it is timely that we have launched the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Responsible Vaping. The group will provide parliamentarians with the opportunity to scrutinise the Government’s proposals and to help ensure that they are balanced and workable.

Can vaping cause changes in our cells?

Julia Cotterill – CRUK

You may have seen recent media coverage of a study that looked at changes in different types of cells from people who smoked and people who vaped. In this article, we take a closer look at what the researchers did, what they found and what the results of the study could mean.

Does this study show that vaping causes cancer?

No. The type of change that this study looked at is different from changes to a cell’s DNA sequence (mutations). This study shows that some changes were there but not what they might be doing. So, we don’t have enough information yet to understand what these findings mean in terms of any potential health effects.

Expert Reaction to epigenetic changes in cells of smokers and vapers

More than 50% of vapers think …

Price increase will boost black market – Tony Corbin

Following the recent announcement of a new vaping tax which will make products more expensive from October 2026, new insights from research and insights agency Opinium reveal that more than half (56%) of current vapers predict black market e-cigarette and vape sales will increase if prices rise.

Despite the tax being introduced to primarily curb youth vaping, the majority (66%) of vapers also think more children will buy products on the black market as a result – and among the UK public overall, 54% agree with this view.

Five from Dave Cross, Planet of the Vapes:

Vapers Protest Mexican Congress

Hundreds of vapers protested in front of Mexico’s Congress of the Union to call for an end to the ban on vaping and a risk-based regulation in a demonstration organised by the World Vapers’ Alliance and All Vape Mexico. An extension to the ban was announced in December by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, saying it’s “proven” that vaping is bad for your health.

The protesters demanded an end to the ban on the sale of vaping products – in force in the country since May 2020 – and a halt to the constitutional reform proposed by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador that aims to elevate the ban to the Constitution. They also called for the approval of a risk-based regulation that allowed adult smokers access to vape products to quit smoking.

Councils Disinterested in Recycling

Councils are disinterested in recycling, according to the UK Vaping Industry Association following freedom of Information requests. Four fifths of those council’s responding announced that they had “no plans” to invest in new vape collection solutions in the next twelve months. The Government announced that it is banning disposables in part due to the impact on the environment – but a third of councils have absolutely no collection/drop-off points and do nothing to raise awareness about vape recycling.

A new investigation has revealed a staggering lack of investment in collection points for expired vapes across the UK, just a few weeks after the government announced a ban on disposable vapes which was motivated in part by environmental concerns.

Re-evaluate WHO FCTC Involvement

The Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Advocates (CAPHRA), a leading international consumer advocacy group, is urging governments to re-evaluate their involvement with the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) amid concerns of NGO activism and exclusionary practices.

“We’re today highlighting troubling evidence of the FCTC’s deviation from its original objectives towards becoming a platform dominated by non-governmental organisation (NGO) activism,” says said Nancy Loucas, a public health policy expert, passionate advocate for tobacco harm reduction, and executive coordinator of CAPHRA.

Happy Birthday Smoke Free Sweden

Smoke Free Sweden has marked one year of existence and celebrated its achievement of global recognition for Sweden’s fight against smoking using reduced-risk alternatives. A year ago, international harm reduction experts came together in Stockholm to launch the new movement to celebrate Sweden’s spectacular and successful fight against smoking.

Commenting on the anniversary, Dr Delon Human, leader of the Smoke Free Sweden initiative and former Health Advisor to three WHO Director-Generals, said: “We started the Smoke Free Sweden movement because the world had for so many years the answer to smoking right under its nose. That is what we have been doing over the last year.

UKVIA Responds to Criticism

The UK Vaping Industry Association has responded to criticism and accusations following the Freedom of Information request research findings looking at vape recycling. The newly-released UKVIA research on the level of investment into vape recycling facilities by local authorities was covered by Planet of the Vapes on Wednesday.

The Local Authority Recycling Advisory Committee (LARAC) attacked the vape industry for its “lack of commitment”, adding, “Vapes are a difficult to recycle material and all vape producers have a legal responsibility to finance take-back of vapes for recycling, not cash-strapped councils.

Two from Alastair Cohen, Clearing The Air:

Spanish vapers ignored by Ministry

A petition demanding that the Spanish Health Ministry meet vapers and consumers of other safer nicotine products has gained over 2,000 signatures in just one week.

It comes after Spanish Health Minister – Javier Padilla, of the ultra left-wing Podemos party – refused to meet with local consumer group ANESVAP and accused them of representing commercial interests.

Padilla provided no evidence to support his accusation, and ANESVAP strongly rejects any accusation that it represents commercial interests.

Half of Slovenian vapers…

Would resort to smoking or the black market if flavours were banned

Half of Slovenian vapers would resort to smoking or the black market if flavours were banned.

A flavour ban would put vapers in Slovenia at risk by pushing them towards smoking, the black market, or making their own e-liquids, according to a new IPSOS survey.

The survey was financed by the Tholos Foundation following plans by the Slovenian Government to ban flavours in vaping products, alongside a range of anti-smoking measures.

International Health Experts

Condemn Poland’s Approach to Tobacco Taxation – Smoke Free Sweden

International health experts have criticised a new proposal from Poland’s Finance Ministry which would tax cigarettes and nicotine pouches at the same level despite the vast difference in the risk they pose to users.

Sweden, which is on the brink of being officially smoke free and has significantly lower smoking rates than Poland, has adopted a system of taxation proportionate to the risk of alternative products.

In practice, this means that the rates of taxation for nicotine pouches are, on average, 30 kroner (€2.65) cheaper than cigarettes, because they pose only a fraction of the risk.

Heated Tobacco Products

Can Help the US Make Smoking Obsolete – Lindsey Stroud

From vapes to snus and nicotine pouches, we have a growing array of much safer substitutes for the combustible cigarettes that cost almost a half million lives each year in the United States.

That’s crucial, when individuals who switch from smoking have a variety of different needs. Some won’t find vaping helpful until they hit upon the right flavor, for example. To some, hand-to-mouth action and inhalation are essential elements for harm reduction products to replace; for others, it’s more about the nicotine, and oral products are more convenient.

Utah Governor Signs Flavor Ban

Jim McDonald

Utah became the fifth U.S. state with a PMTA registry law and the sixth with a flavored vape ban when Governor Spencer Cox signed bill SB 61 into law Wednesday. The law will take effect Jan. 1, 2025.

PMTA registry bills are currently being debated in about two dozen other state legislatures. In Vermont, Virginia and Florida, registry bills have already been passed by state legislatures and sent to governors to sign or veto. The registry bills are written and promoted by tobacco giants Altria Group and R.J. Reynolds, which have lost significant cigarette sales revenue to unauthorized disposable vapes.

Solicitor General Takes Vaping…

To the Supreme Court – Jonathan H. Adler

This week, the Office of the Solicitor General filed a petition for certiorari in FDA v. Wages & White Lion Investments LLC, asking the Supreme Court to review the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit’s en banc decision concluding that the FDA’s denial of some vaping product pre-market tobacco applications (PMTAs) was arbitrary and capricious. According to the SG, Supreme Court review of the Fifth Circuit’s decision is warranted because the court relied upon “legal theories that have been rejected by other courts of appeals that have reviewed materially similar FDA denial orders.”

COP Out – The WHO Efforts

To End the Harms of Tobacco – Jeffrey S. Smith

In 2005, the World Health Organization (WHO) adopted its first treaty, the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), which was intended to act as an international legal agreement to apply tobacco control initiatives globally. This treaty was aimed at reducing the use of tobacco products and reducing the impact of combustible products on public health. The primary driver of establishing the FCTC was the prediction that, if allowed to continue unchecked, the number of lives lost globally per year from smoking-related disease would grow from 3.5 million lives (in 1998) to 10 million deaths per year by 2030.

Nanny State Australia Has a New Enemy:

Nicotine Pouches – Joseph Hart

In Kazuo Ishiguro’s much-loved novel, The Remains of the Day, Mr. Stevens, a faithful and dutiful butler, reflects on his years of service. Stevens is filled with regrets about some of his actions and decisions and is all too aware of the missed opportunities of his tenure. His obsession with dignity has caused him to cleave out a part of himself in service of a greater cause, which the book explores in haunting emotional detail.

As butlers go, Stevens is up there with the best. However, Australian Health Minister Mark Butler, on the other hand, is the opposite of Stevens. He lacks reflection, capacity for regret, awareness of missed opportunities, and dignity.

Australia to ban vapes in new law

Colin Mendelsohn

The new regulations will wipe out small businesses, increase gang violence and increase smoking. We need to regulate smarter. Comments by me and vape shop owner Chris Franzi.

MAGNIFICAT: published the innovative…

Protocol on dual users and harm reduction potential

The MAGNIFICAT project is a novelty for the research center of Catania, the CoEHAR. Its aim is to investigate whether different dual use patterns offer equivalent harm reduction potential.

The MAGNIFICAT study, strongly advocated by Prof. Riccardo Polosa, will evaluate the effects of the combined use of conventional cigarettes and electronic cigarettes on human health, quantifying this impact by collecting samples, researching and describing the core of different levels of dual use on exposure to toxic substances and harm reduction, and using specific biomarkers, clinical endpoints, and behavioral correlations.

Vaping Regulations Cost Lives

Justin Leventhal

Despite the proven effectiveness of vaping in getting smokers to quit and it being 95 percent safer than smoking, many federal, state and local governments impose strict regulations on vaping products, making it more difficult for the millions of smokers in America to quit. These restrictions contribute to the hundreds of thousands of deaths annually that could be prevented if smokers could more easily quit. Laws imposing taxes, flavor restrictions and outright bans on vaping products prevent smokers from quitting by switching to less dangerous options, costing thousands of lives nationwide.

Consumers Move to Vaping Products

At Dramatic Rate | #GFNTVInterviews

Despite extensive regulatory barriers and massive misinformation on relative risk, consumers are transitioning from cigarettes to safer nicotine products at an extraordinary pace. In today’s episode tobacco control policy expert David Sweanor guides us through the remarkable growth of the U.S. vaping market and issues a warning to those who seek to stand in the way.

It’s time to talk realistically…

About tobacco harm reduction

We need more constructive non-political discourse about tobacco harm reduction to bridge the “substantial information gap” and counter the impact of bad science on the current prohibitionist mindset. That’s the view of the German Association of the Tobacco Industry and New Products (Bundesverband der Tabakwirtschaft und neuartiger Erzeugnisse, BVTE), according to a recent interview with TobaccoIntelligence about the dangers of misinformation and “sloppy legislation”.

Frank Henkler-Stephani (pictured), senior director of tobacco harm reduction at BVTE told TobaccoIntelligence that misinformation in the media was not always intentional but often a result of negatively biased scientific reports about vaping.

An Appeal for Human Rights …

In Tobacco Legislation: The Case of Dr Kgosi Letlape

In a recent public hearing, Dr Kgosi Letlape, an ophthalmologist and chairman of the Africa Harm Reduction Alliance (AHRA), spoke vehemently against the clauses within a bill on tobacco control in South Africa. Dr Letlape emphasises how the bill “does not differentiate between combustible cigarettes and alternative nicotine products” and creates a situation where human rights are unnecessarily and dangerously pit against public health.

Three principal reasons serve as the significant bases from which Dr Letlape drew in standing to oppose the bill: each rooted in concerns over ethics, human dignity, and the right to informed choice.

On this Day…2023

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

Flawed Research

Konstantinos Farsalinos and Riccardo Polosa have published a commentary paper looking at the flawed electronic cigarette research that gets published due to defective peer review process. The research has been published in the journal Internal and Emergency Medicine. The pair of experts argue that controversy about vaping is whipped up through poorly designed, conducted, and interpreted research work.

“Research on tobacco harm reduction (THR), and particularly on electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes), remains a highly controversial topic in the scientific community. The controversy is also sustained by research, which is often poorly designed, conducted, and interpreted,” say Doctors Konstantinos Farsalinos and Riccardo Polosa.

The Return of Chumpman

Australian “anti-tobacco crusader” Simon Chapman has returned to the media to fire yet another unhinged attack on vaping and the research gold standard Cochrane review findings. Published in Australian Doctor, the crank takes issue with Cochrane review finding “high-certainty evidence” that vaping is much more effective than nicotine replacement products at helping smokers quit tobacco use.

Prior to his retirement, Chapman lined up alongside the UK’s Professor Martin McKee and the USA’s Professor Stanton Glantz to issue a barrage of unfounded speculation and misinformation strewn press releases aimed at stoking evidence-free fear in the public and legislators.

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



Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,