Vapers Digest 28th May

Friday’s News at a glance:

Harry’s blog 111: Stop talking about stopping – Vaping and ScienceDutch Vapers Can Still Prevent Flavor Prohibition San Francisco Flavor Ban Tied to More Teen Smoking – Why you should NOT equate snus with cigarettes – British government review of rulesTaskforce Says Smoking Is An Illness – Netherlands Bans Flavours – Europe’s TPD Update – VPZ Breaks RecordsNZ Wants Vaping Starter Kits – WVA Details Plans For World Vape Day – On World No Tobacco Day – Kiwis celebrate World Vape Day – World Vape Day aims to raise awarenessAt ‘World No Tobacco Day’ Roundtable – Health Risks Of Vaping – Nicotine buzz in the airCAPHRA supports ‘historic’ vaping bill – WHO’s Latest Tobacco Report – The E-Cigarette Summit – The Canadian Vaping Association – Canada’s Reckless Fight – Rethink THR StrategiesScience should prevail over politics – Nicotine Science and Policy Daily Digest

Stop talking about stopping

Harry Shapiro

Globally most smokers know or at least have a strong inkling their habit is bad idea. They may have lost family and friends to cancer or some form of lung disease. They themselves may now be easily out of breath where once they were active sportspeople. They tell researchers they want to quit. But millions don’t. Why?

There are many reasons; ritual, culture, accepted behaviour among peers, and maybe the power of advertising (although more diminished these days). But the primary reason must be that they enjoy the feeling they get from consuming nicotine.

Vaping and Science – who to believe?

Rachel Davies – Vaped

Who do you believe when it comes to vaping and science? While the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) was releasing a report about Smoking and Health in 2021, full of support for vaping. The World Health Organisation (WHO) was announcing their campaign for World No Tobacco Day 2021, demonising vaping.

So why do these two scientific institutions offer such vastly different opinions of vaping? Some of this is about which parts of the world they are responsible for.

In the case of the RCP, it’s very much a view from the UK. The WHO has a much larger remit, and has to consider policies for the whole of the world, and this includes global regions where tobacco smoking is increasing.


Two from Jim McDonald Vaping 360

Dutch Vapers Can Still Prevent Prohibition

On May 21, the outgoing Dutch cabinet (the Council of Ministers) approved the long-threatened flavor ban, despite massive consumer opposition. But vaping advocates say the law, set to take effect July 1, 2022, can still be stopped.

The flavor prohibition must still be approved by the new House of Representatives, many of whom are newly elected and unfamiliar with the issue. If the House declares the issue “controversial,” the decision will be reconsidered by the new cabinet when it is formed.

Using a dedicated website called Smaak Noodzaak (“taste necessity”), Dutch consumer advocates Acvoda and trade organization Esigbond are collaborating to encourage vapers to share their quit-smoking stories with Dutch political parties …

San Francisco Flavor Ban

Tied to More Teen Smoking

Will banning flavored vapes lead to more smoking? That question has mostly been ignored by politicians eager to please the powerful tobacco control groups that insist flavor bans will put an end to youth vaping. Since late 2019, lawmakers in five states and many municipalities have passed flavor bans.

But new research should give legislators and regulators pause when considering laws and rules prohibiting flavored vapes. Such blunt tools may do more harm than good.

A study published this week in the journal JAMA Pediatrics shows that the first flavor ban in a major U.S. city was associated with increased teenage smoking compared to cities without flavor bans.

Why you should NOT equate snus…

With cigarettes: 3 arguments – Snusforumet

Despite the huge differences in health risks between smoking and snus, there are those who still believe that all tobacco use should be treated equally when shaping policy. Below are a few arguments for why it’s wrong to equate snus with cigarettes and treat all tobacco equally.

In 2021, Sweden is set to update its ANDTS strategy, a five-year strategy outlining how the government should manage policies governing a number of vices: alcohol, narcotics, doping, tobacco and gaming.

British government review of tobacco rules

Won’t be coming any time soon – David Palacios Rubio

The UK government’s post-implementation review of the 2016 Tobacco and Related Products Regulations (TRPR) won’t be ready before the end of the year.

TobaccoIntelligence has learned that the Covid-19 pandemic has delayed processing of the so-called post implementation review (PIR), which was originally scheduled by health secretary Matt Hancock (pictured) for publication on 20th May.

The review of the current rules is expected to lead to a possible regulatory change to adapt the legislation to the most recent developments.

Six from Dave Cross, Planet of the Vapes

Taskforce Says Smoking Is An Illness

A taskforce has said tobacco addiction needs to be treated like an illness and that the number of NHS staff trained to offer advice needs to be increased. The UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) has responded to the announcement from Sarah MacFadyen, Vice Chair of the Taskforce for Lung Health and Head of Policy and External Affairs at Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation.

The Taskforce suggests that many of the UK’s 6.9 million smokers are not getting the support they need to stop.

MacFadyen writes: “A key tool for supporting people to quit is Very Brief Advice (VBA), also known as VBA. The Taskforce for Lung Health recommends that this 30-second intervention is delivered by all healthcare professionals in consultations with a patient who smokes…

Netherlands Bans Flavours

As of July 1, 2022, it will be forbidden to have flavoured e-liquids, the Netherlands Ministry of Health announced last Friday. The flavour ban has been justified by claiming it will make smoking and vaping less attractive to teens – but we know the reality is that it will be the adult smokers and ex-smokers who will be most affected.

Blokhuis announced the intention to implement a ban last year, but it was delayed by six months. Vaping organisations organised protests, but the public failed to join up in sufficient numbers to convince the politicians of the error of their ways.

Europe’s TPD Update

The European Commission has published a report updating its opinion on how the Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) has performed and signals the future direction. It had to publish this within 5 years of the TPD coming into effect. European vapers have been given cause for concern over threats to open systems. Sections from the report (1) of clear importance:

VPZ Breaks Records and Opens Clinics

VPZ, the UK’s largest vaping retailer, is launching a new Vape Clinic service as it continues to help increasing numbers of smokers quit. The move comes as the specialist delivers a 165 per cent increase in “New to Vaping” kit sales, in the first week of re-opening following the relaxation of Lockdown measures.

The uptake and demand for stop smoking services underlines and re-affirms VPZ’s recent calls for vaping stores to be classed as an essential retailer during the Pandemic.

NZ Wants Vaping Starter Kits Like UK

Budget 2021 should supercharge ‘vape to quit’ smoking cessation programmes already well established across New Zealand’s health sector. In fact, adopting one initiative now underway at several NHS hospitals in the UK would be a brilliant step for Smokefree Aotearoa, says a leading tobacco harm reduction advocate.

“Our government is now determined to get Smokefree 2025 back on track. Budget Day on 20 May is the first opportunity to put its money where its mouth is. Our District Health Boards and Maori health organisations have had huge success with switching smokers into vapers. It’s time for the Government to back them more,” says Nancy Loucas, co-director of Aotearoa Vapers Community Advocacy (AVCA)

WVA Details Plans For World Vape Day

World Vape Day 2021 is a day to celebrate vaping. Vaping has changed the lives of millions of people worldwide and we will use the day to highlight the benefits of tobacco harm reduction in general and of vaping in particular. The World Vaper’s Alliance (WVA) has detailed its plans for celebrating the global event.

World Vapers’ Alliance was part of the celebrations last year, on 30 May, and we saw an incredible outpour of support from people all over the world. This year, the organisation is “back at it”, bringing together vaping activists, influencers, and experts to talk about vaping, have some fun with vape tricks, discuss pressing issues and talk about everything vaping.

On World No Tobacco Day

More than 30 years since the first World No Tobacco Day (WNTD), there are still 8 million annual deaths attributed to tobacco use and more than 1 billion individuals still smoke. These facts are proof that health policies and actions have not been adequate. The challenges that smokers face when trying to quit have been largely ignored. The calls by the World Health Organization (WHO) for smokers to quit using fairly ineffective interventions suggest we need new approaches. Technology innovation, in the form of harm reduction, offers a new way forward for smokers that complements classic cessation efforts.

On this WNTD (May 31), the Foundation urges adult smokers to commit to quit smoking combustibles and chewing toxic smokeless tobacco products or switch to a growing range of less harmful nicotine-based alternatives.

Kiwis celebrate World Vape Day

Kiwi ex-smokers and vaping advocates will celebrate World Vape Day on Sunday, 30 May – the first since New Zealand legislated and regulated vaping. However, much more effort is required to achieve Smokefree Aotearoa with submissions on the Government’s action plan set to close, say tobacco harm reduction proponents.

“World Vape Day is a celebration of personal stories of smokers who have found an incredibly effective way out of smoking, thanks to the advent of innovative smoke-free products,” says Nancy Loucas, co-director of Aotearoa Vapers Community Advocacy (AVCA).

World Vape Day aims to raise awareness

Vaping gradually has turned into an expanding sector across the world, including in Bangladesh. However, vaping is subject to various misconceptions and oppositions. On the contrary, millions of vaping users – commonly known as vapers- will celebrate World Vape Day globally on 29 May. Vapers’ communities in Bangladesh aim to create awareness on vaping and encourage smokers to use it as smoking cessation tool by switching to safer nicotine.

The theme for 2021 is “Go The Extra Mile.” Amid the Covid-19 outbreak, vapers in Bangladesh will celebrate the day online by arranging webinar to provide scopes to vapers from different groups and professions to share experiences about the relatively new product and how they use it as cessation tool.

At ‘World No Tobacco Day’ Roundtable

Monday, May 31 is the World Health Organization’s “World No Tobacco Day” and just like most years quitting is easier said than done. But according to health experts during a recent roundtable, public health organizations are making it harder by opposing the use of alternatives like vaping and e-cigarettes.

“We need to focus more on the root cause of the problem, which is nicotine addiction to a deadly, addictive product,” said Dr. K. Michael Cummings of the Hollings Cancer Center. “We also need to keep an open mind on alternative nicotine products.”

STUDY: San Francisco’s Ban…

On Flavored Tobacco More than Doubled Youth Smoking

In June of 2018, San Francisco became the first city in the United States to enact a complete ban on all flavored tobacco products. Included in the ban were reduced harm alternatives like e-cigarettes, vapes, and smokeless tobacco. The ban was the result of a ballot referendum, Proposition E, that 68% of voters supported. Nearly three years later, startling new evidence is emerging that demonstrates San Francisco’s flavor ban has had serious consequences for public health and should serve as a clear and urgent warning to other states that are considering similar measures.

San Francisco’s ban  led to 30% increase in teens smoking cigarettes

Did San Francisco’s Ban…

On Flavored Tobacco Products Increase Teen Smoking?

In 2018, San Francisco voters approved a ban on the sale of all flavored tobacco products, including e-cigarettes and other vaping products. The idea was that flavorings make tobacco products attractive to youth, and that banning such flavors would discourage use by teens. Yet laws do not always have their intended effects.

San Francisco’s flavor ban appears to have increased teen smoking, according to new research from the Yale School of Public Health, just published in JAMA Pediatrics. From the study:

Deadly Mistake:

Ban on Flavored Nicotine Products Led Teenagers to Smoke More Cigarettes

The latest target of the public health bureaucracy’s regulatory efforts is flavored tobacco products, in particular, flavored vaping products that are often popular among young people. Bans on such products are cropping up around the country, but a new study shows that these restrictions can backfire—to deadly consequence.

Yale University Public Health Professor Abigail S. Friedman examined the impact of San Francisco’s ban on flavored products, and her new research, published in the prestigious medical journal JAMA Pediatrics, shows how it went wrong.

Health Risks Of Vaping:

Let’s Stick To The Science And Speculate Less – Cameron English

Despite increasing evidence that vaping is safer than smoking, uncertainty surrounds the long-term effects of electronic cigarette use. Many in the tobacco control field have used the lack of data to speculate about these unknown risks. Here’s a better way to deal with the uncertainty.

A growing body of evidence gathered over the last 15 years has shown that using an electronic cigarette (“vaping”) is probably far safer than smoking and likely to help smokers quit their deadly habit forever. Certain segments of the public health establishment have reacted oddly to these results—they’ve ignored them and treated vaping as a serious threat.

The Canadian Vaping Association

Urges New Brunswick to preserve adult access to flavoured vape products

An opposition bill that would ban flavoured vape products has passed second reading with unanimous support in the New Brunswick Legislature. Health Minister Dorothy Shephard has said that the Progressive Conservatives plan to support the bill through committee. The Canadian Vaping Association (CVA) has previously cautioned New Brunswick that banning flavours will increase smoking rates and urges the Government of New Brunswick to change course before it is too late.

Canada’s Reckless Fight

With People Who Use Nicotine

One could be forgiven for thinking that Canada is getting it right with regards to tobacco harm reduction (THR). The Canadian government’s approach is often compared with the United Kingdom, a leader in THR, if there are any to be found in the world. Journalists emphasize that Canada’s approach is more humane and focused on harm reduction than a country like the United States. The reality could not be further from the truth. Canada has taken a hard line, not just against people who smoke but against people who use nicotine in any form. The truth is that Canadian governments at both the federal and provincial levels and Health Canada, our public health agency, have initiated a war against people who use nicotine. And nobody really cares.

Nicotine buzz in the air…

As vaping rises, smoking falls – Nelson Bennett

Ever since tobacco was introduced to Europeans in the mid-16th century, governments the world over have been taxing it, and puritans and physicians have been trying to outlaw it.

The delivery systems for nicotine have changed over the centuries, from snuff and pipes to cigars, cigarettes and chewing tobacco and, more recently, the modern e-cigarette, or vape.

Smoking has been declining for decades now, and vaping may now be accelerating the trend.

CAPHRA supports ‘historic’ vaping bill

The Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates (CAPHRA) welcomed the approval by the House of Representatives of a historic bill that regulates the manufacture, use, sale, distribution, and promotion of vaping, as well as heated tobacco products.

Following the bill’s approval on third reading at the House of Representatives, it will go to the Senate. According to consumer advocates, barring any undue outside influence, the bill is expected to be approved into law.

WHO’s Latest Tobacco Report –

An ‘epic Fail’ For Public Health

Asia Pacific’s leading tobacco harm reduction advocacy group, CAPHRA, is deeply disturbed by the World Health Organisation’s recently released ‘Tobacco Product Regulation Report’. It says WHO’s negative and obstructive approach towards safer nicotine vaping products continues to impact smoking cessation rates, costing lives globally.

“Good public health policy reduces the threats and harms to the public. It does not create them, or introduce confusion, yet that’s exactly what WHO seems determined to do,” says Nancy Loucas, Executive Coordinator of the Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates

At the US E-Cigarette Conference…

A Reckoning With Loss of Public Trust – Alex Norcia

The future of tobacco control is up for grabs. Nowhere was this more apparent than at this year’s US E-Cigarette Summit. Held virtually on May 24-25, the conference featured a wide range of speakers—doctors, tobacco control experts, notable employees of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), drug reform advocates and industry alike—from across the globe.

The theme of the two-day publicly broadcast event was “discussing the role that e-cigarettes and alternative nicotine products could play in ending or extending the smoking epidemic.” But a second, simpler one quickly emerged: regaining trust.

The E-Cigarette Summit:

“This is just a crazy space right now.”

Take a look, please, at this poster from the Partnership for a Drug Free New Jersey, a nonprofit supported by tax dollars. Setting aside the idea of a drug-free New Jersey — presumably, there are no plans to ban alcohol, caffeine and aspirin from the Garden State — the clear implication is that e-cigarettes will kill everyone who tries them. This is so patently false that it is unlikely to deter anyone from vaping. It is, however, an extreme example of how unscientific, distorted and one-sided the debate about vaping has become in the US.

Rethink THR Strategies To Curb Smoking

More than 80 practitioners attended the 11th National Conference on Addiction Medicine (11th NatCAM), which was organised by the Addiction Medicine Association of Malaysia (AMAM) and the Federation of Private Medical Practitioners’ Association Malaysia (FPMPAM) on May 23, 2021.

The 11th NatCAM specifically addressed various issues related to drug addiction and its treatment in the era of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Experts and practitioners working at ground zero of the addiction disease landscape have raised alarm over the current issue of substance use in adolescents and young adults, which has been neglected during this pandemic.

Ain’t a health measure:

Wes Gatchalian explains bid for DTI to regulate e-cigarettes

Deputy Speaker and Valenzuela Rep. Wes Gatchalian defended the measure that will regulate the use and sale of vapes, e-cigarettes, and other electronic nicotine and non-nicotine delivery systems (ENDS/ENNDS).

Gatchalian said House Bill 9007 will pave the way to curb the rampant proliferation of the illegal industry that sells ENDS, ENNDS, and heated tobacco products (HTPs) to minors. The bill was approved on third and final reading last Tuesday.

“We would like to emphasize that this bill will serve to regulate, and not ban, the sale of these products,” Gatchalian said.

Science should prevail over politics

David B. Abrams and Raymond S. Niaura

In late April, the Food and Drug Administration announced its intention to begin the process of banning menthol flavors in cigarettes and all flavors in cigars. As public health researchers, we applaud the FDA’s actions as important steps and indications that, as a country, we are headed in the right direction when it comes to relying on science to address the devastating public health burden of combustible tobacco use.

Understandably, the FDA’s recent announcement left many wondering about other flavored tobacco products, mainly e-cigarettes, and whether they, too, should be banned.

On this Day…2020

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

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



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