Vapers Digest 29th March

Friday’s News at a glance:

WVA Condemns Rishi Sunak – ASH Supports Anti-Vape Action – Free vapes could ‘save thousands of lives’ – Let’s talk e-cigarettes, March 2024 Ian Pope – Predictable, Avoidable and Harmful: Canada’s Nicotine Pouch Fiasco – Real Threat | Health Minister Unravels Canada’s Tobacco Strategy – Calling out fake news – Tobacco Control Sophistry – Restricting vaping products will only help big tobacco – The vape debate – Mexico’s Vaping Dilemma – A Long Walk With the Tobacco Users of Mumbai – South Africa’s tobacco policy is a contradictory mess

Two from Dave Cross, Planet of the Vapes:

WVA Condemns Rishi Sunak

Justifying the new legislation, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said: “If we want to build a better future for our children we need to tackle the single biggest entirely preventable cause of ill health, disability and death: smoking.”

The problem with the Tobacco and Vapes Bill is that it doesn’t just address smoking, it seeks to limit access to vapes and grants powers to the Government to make them less attractive to adult smokers.

“We are a libertarian party,” Tory MP Greg Smith told journalists.

ASH Supports Anti-Vape Action

Action on Smoking and Health commented that parliamentarians from across all major parties pledged their support, “and polling shows voters for all major parties back raising the age of sale for tobacco by a substantial margin.”

The anti-smoking charity pointed to its YouGov poll which found that two thirds of adults support smokefree generation legislation (14% are opposed). Support is strongest among those who intend to vote for the two main parties in the general election (73% of those intending to vote Conservative, 72% Labour.


Free vapes could ‘save thousands of lives’

Alex Pope, BBC News, Norfolk

Handing out free vapes to smokers in A&E departments could “save thousands of lives”, a new study has found.

Academics from the University of East Anglia (UEA), based in Norwich, conducted a trial in six UK emergency departments, between January and August 2022.

The trial saw hundreds of daily smokers given e-cigarette starter kits and offered advice, with smoking habits assessed six months later.

The university said the approach “could result in more than 22,000 extra people quitting smoking each year”.

Free vapes given to smokers at hospitals could help thousands quit – Sky

Let’s talk e-cigarettes

March 2024 Ian Pope

Associate Professor Jamie Hartmann-Boyce and Dr Nicola Lindson discuss the new evidence in e-cigarette research and interview Dr Ian Pope, an emergency medicine physician and honorary associate professor at Norwich Medical School, about his new trial, which he co leads with Professor Caitlin Notley from the University of East Anglia. The new trial is the COSTED trial, the Cessation of Smoking Trial in the Emergency Department and funded by the British National Institutes of Health Research. This is a multi-centre randomised controlled trial, based in 6 emergency departments around the UK.


Hear the stories of the participants that took part in the COSTED (Cessation of Smoking Trial in the Emergency Department) trial, which attempts to help smokers quit with the use of vapes.

Predictable, Avoidable and Harmful:

Canada’s Nicotine Pouch Fiasco – John Oyston

Canada is supposedly organized on the principles of “peace, order and good government.” My country’s handling of nicotine pouches, an important harm reduction tool, suggests otherwise. Frankly, it’s been a fiasco. Most parties involved have made major mistakes, for which people who smoke will pay.

With tobacco harm reduction products in general, Canada has taken an approach that is decidedly mixed, but nowhere near as draconian as in other parts of the world. However, until July 2023, Health Canada took a very dim view of nicotine pouches.

Real Threat

Health Minister Unravels Canada’s Tobacco Strategy | RegWatch

Canadian Federal Health Minister Mark Holland is launching a crusade against safer nicotine products, driven by the uncompromising stance of non-profit health groups vehemently opposed to any form of nicotine consumption. In the minister’s crosshairs, are flavoured nicotine products such as vapes and pouches.

Joining us today to talk through the impacts of a nationwide ban on flavours is Sam Tam, president of the Canadian Vaping Association. Hear how Holland’s flavour ban would threaten the health of over 1.3 million vapers, unravel Canada’s tobacco strategy, and destroy the legal billion-dollar vaping industry.

Calling out fake news:

Prohibitionists getting owned by community notes – Alastair Cohen

The Community Notes feature on X (formerly known as Twitter) has been a powerful tool for calling out fake news from people who don’t want smokers to have access to safer nicotine products.

We’ve seen some really funny – and quite shocking – examples of people who really should know better having their posts torn to shreds by others on the Community Notes feature. So we thought we’d pull together an occasional series where we showcase the best of them.

Tobacco Control Sophistry:

Won’t Someone Think Of The Children? – Joseph Hart

When I started writing many years ago, I did my share of sales copywriting. It was primarily direct response copy, and the products included hair loss medication, vitamins, and a “system” to help men with dating. It was not my finest hour.

I always found the work a bit grimy, but it was interesting on a technical level. When the only metric that matters is conversions, and the product is something that people don’t really need, the writing needs to dig deep.

Restricting vaping products

Will only help big tobacco, not consumers

It can’t be said any clearer than this: Virginia is on the brink of disaster when it comes to helping people quit smoking cigarettes if Gov. Glenn Youngkin signs Senate Bill 550 and House Bill 1609 into law.

This legislation effectively bans most forms of vaping products while giving a major carve-out to the same products produced by big tobacco companies. This legislation will drive large numbers of consumers back to cigarettes in stark contrast to the decades spent encouraging people to give up the unhealthy practice.

The vape debate – Report from Parliament

Colin Mendelsohn

SPEAKERS IN LAST WEEK’S PARLIAMENTARY DEBATE on the Vaping Reform Bill all agreed that the primary focus of vaping legislation should be to reduce youth use. However, there was very little agreement on anything else. The debate uncovered widespread misinformation about vaping and largely dismissed the huge value of vaping as an adult quitting aid.
Focus on youth vaping

The main focus of the debate was vaping by young people. This concern is legitimate but seemed disproportionate given the low rate of regular or frequent vaping. Only 3.5% of 14-17-year-olds vape daily. Most youth vaping is infrequent and transient and is of little public health importance.

We need more than a ban …

On menthol cigarettes to curb smoking rates

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is poised to take its biggest action yet to lower smoking rates by banning menthol cigarettes. But without providing a robust off-ramp to support menthol cigarette smokers who might quit, the effort will fall short of projections for the number of lives that could be saved.

In 2022, the FDA proposed regulations that would ban the manufacturing and sale of menthol-flavored cigarettes and all flavored cigars as part of its commitment to decreasing deaths from tobacco use and improving health equity.

Philip Morris nears Texas launch

Of flagship heated tobacco device

Philip Morris International is preparing to launch its flagship heated tobacco device IQOS in Austin, Texas, indicating it will be the first testing ground for its U.S. entry, job adverts on LinkedIn show.

IQOS, the top selling heated tobacco device globally, sits at the core of the world’s biggest tobacco company’s efforts to transform its image from a purveyor of cigarettes to a driving force behind the switch to healthier options.

Mexico’s Vaping Dilemma

Tomás O’Gorman explores Mexico’s hardline approach to vaping

Mexico’s President is seeking to solidify Mexico’s hardline approach to vaping with a proposal to ban vaping through a constitutional amendment, to the consternation of vaping advocates who fear smokers will lose access to these safer alternatives in the country. Joining us to today is Tomás O’Gorman, co-founder of “Pro-Vapeo Mexico” and a member of INNCO’s Board, who highlights the hardening of Mexico’s anti-vaping stance and the impact this could have on smokers’ ability to quit in Mexico.

A Long Walk With …

The Tobacco Users of Mumbai – Kiran Sidhu

I‘m taking a walk through central Mumbai with Rizwan, who switched from smoking tobacco to vaping, then turned vape seller. He’s far from alone in this, after India banned vapes in 2019. Vape converts have become advocates who then, under prohibition, supply to others what they say saved their own lives.

We walk past a cafe. At the end of a pristine lawn, a man in an orange kurta is bent over, washing large green leaves under a tap. Rizwan wants me to see, and asks the man to show me. “This is paan,” Rizwan says.

South Africa’s tobacco policy…

Is a contradictory mess

There’s neither rhyme nor reason behind South Africa’s inconsistent tobacco control policies. In the United Kingdom, the public health authorities actively encourage vaping as a safer alternative to smoking, and as an aid to quitting smoking.

So much so that they recently conducted a trial. Almost 500 smokers who attended hospital emergency departments were given a vaping starter pack and referred to ‘stop smoking’ services. A control group of similar size was just given information on how to access ‘stop smoking’ services.

On this Day…2023

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

Hands off our Elf Bars!

Christopher Snowdon

According to several headlines today, the UK government is on the verge of banning disposable e-cigarettes. It may even be thinking of banning some e-cigarette flavours. This is all just speculation for now. The only word from the government is that it will be launching a public consultation to ask what, if anything, it should do about an apparent rise in youth vaping.

On the face of it, the scale of underage vaping does not seem too alarming. The most recent figures are from 2021 and they show that the proportion of secondary-school pupils who have ever tried an e-cigarette was 22 per cent. This is no higher than it was in 2014, although the proportion who said they were regular vapers rose from four per cent to nine per cent in the same period. Of these regular vapers, only one per cent had never smoked a cigarette. In other words, only 0.09 per cent of secondary-school children regularly vape and have never smoked.

How To Fix The Disposable Vape Problem

With Some Simple Regulation Changes! – Vape Club

With the upcoming reading of Dr. Caroline Johnson’s bill regarding disposable vapes due on March 24th, it is important that we look at both the benefits of disposable vapes and how we can effectively tackle the rising problems without restricting access to the single most effective quitting aid available to adult smokers.

We can all agree that there are two major issues with the disposable vape market that need addressing:

However, finding a solution to these problems should also take into account the often ignored benefits of the products.

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