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Hard work by vaping advocates helped kill flavor ban bills backed by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids in two state legislatures. In a year thought to be ripe for state-level flavor bans, so far only Hawaii’s legislature has passed a bill prohibiting vape flavors in 2022.

Even though the FDA may never authorize any flavored vape products, shutting down state and local flavor bans is important because the FDA could be tied up for years fighting legal challenges to their Marketing Denial Orders (MDOs).

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A review commissioned by the Department of Health is expected to recommend promoting e-cigarettes as a less harmful alternative for existing smokers, when it reports later this month. Health Secretary Sajid Javid appointed former Barnardo’s Chief Executive Javed Khan to lead the inquiry in February. Ministers want to make England "smoke free", defined as fewer than one in 20 people smoking, by the end of the decade.

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As regulation of the tobacco industry has grown more and more extensive in recent decades, menthol cigarettes have been an exception. They account for more than one-third of cigarette sales in the United States and are especially dangerous because the menthol enhances nicotine’s already potent addictive effects.

Now the Food and Drug Administration is moving to ban these cigarettes, smoked by more than 18 million people ages 12 and over. Among Black smokers, 85 percent smoke menthol cigarettes, compared with 30 percent of white smokers. Banning them in the United States is a crucial step in the decades-long effort to reduce smoking, especially among young people. [...]

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Clive Bates, as a tobacco harm reduction advocate and former director of ASH UK, he gives us an expert "insider" perspective on tobacco control policy and tactics. We discuss regulations in the UK vs. the US, and how tobacco harm reduction--including vaping--has been caught in the crossfire of Tobacco Control's war on the tobacco industry.

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Effective anti-vaping advertisements geared to teens have the greatest impact when they emphasize the adverse consequences and harms of vaping e-cigarettes, use negative imagery, and avoid memes, hashtags and other "teen-centric" communication styles, according to a first-of-its-kind study by researchers at UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center.

The researchers also found that certain messaging content currently being used, especially imagery related to candy and flavor, increases the appeal of vaping and should be avoided when designing prevention messages.

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“Initially hoping to discuss the mechanics of how a drug is made illegal, I instead have a far-reaching discussion about drug policy with one of the greatest living experts on the subject.”

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Since we reported in December 2021 on some significant developments in China’s regulation of e-cigarettes (including the draft national standard on e-cigarettes) as well as in March 2022 on the finalized Management Rules for E-Cigarettes, China’s State Tobacco Monopoly Administration (STMA), also referred to as China National Tobacco Corporation (CNTC), has not only released the national Standard GB 41700-2022 on Electronic Cigarettes but also published further regulations detailing the procedure and requirements for licensing, technical review, etc. In the coming weeks, we will publish a series of articles summarizing these new regulations. [...]

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Various groups pushed for the signing into law of the Vape bill, or the "Vaporized Nicotine and Non-Nicotine Products Regulation Act," to provide adult smokers with "better alternatives" and to "end the smoking epidemic in the country." They said that the bill aims to help regulate smoke-free alternatives such as e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products. The bill, they added, will protect minors and ensure that such products comply with government standards. Dr. Lorenzo Mata, head of anti-smoking advocacy group Quit for Good, said the Vape bill can help the 16 million Filipino smokers kick the deadly smoking habit for good.

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Vaping brands arrived in New Zealand under the auspices of helping New Zealanders quit smoking.

And while they have certainly played a role in that, they've also contributed to an entirely new generation hooked on nicotine.

NZ Herald health reporter Emma Russell tells Front Page podcast a recent survey shows that one in five secondary school students are addicted to vaping.

"One doctor said to me that this could just be history repeating itself," says Russell, referencing the fact that cigarettes have essentially been replaced by vaping.

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The first time the Georgia Department of Corrections tried to go tobacco-free was 1994. In the mid-’90s it was trendy to express concern that exposing non-smoking prisoners to secondhand smoke violated their Eighth Amendment rights, never mind how the smoking majority of us felt about it. Weighing the future prospect of health care savings against the immediate prospect that cigarette-deprived prisoners would (...)

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Philip Morris International Inc. is in advanced talks to acquire Swedish Match AB, according to people familiar with the matter, in a deal that could be valued at about $15 billion or more and bolster the tobacco giant's exposure to the rapidly growing market for smoke-free brands. [...] A deal would be substantial, as Swedish Match is currently valued at about 117 billion Swedish krona, or almost $12 billion. With a typical premium, it could be valued at about $15 billion or more. Philip Morris has a market value of about $154 billion.

 

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In line with claims by other lawsuits, AG Bob Ferguson accused Juul of marketing its products to minors. Despite the settlement, Juul admitted no wrongdoing and was quoted by the Associated Press as referring to the action “another step in our ongoing effort to reset our company and resolve issues from the past.”
As part of the settlement agreement, Juul is not allowed to promote its products on social media or use any marketing tactics that could appeal to adolescents.

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Smokers who think they can lower their risk for cardiovascular disease by sometimes smoking e-cigarettes instead of traditional ones might need to think again: A new study finds people who use both have the same cardiovascular disease risks as those who only smoke traditional cigarettes.

"The fact that dual use – using both traditional, combustible cigarettes and e-cigarettes – had similar cardiovascular disease risk to smoking cigarettes only is an important finding as many Americans are taking up e-cigarettes in an attempt to reduce smoking for what they perceive is a lower risk," senior study author Andrew Stokes said in a news release. [...]

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Swedish Match brand ZYN has launched a tobacco flavoured nicotine pouch that does not use tobacco, targetting those nicotine users who do not wish to consume tobacco, but still enjoy the taste. Swedish Match said the product was particularly developed for consumers who may not have previously considered nicotine pouches, due to preferring a tobacco taste over the current selection of flavours available in the market.

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On May 3, the Hawaii House of Representatives passed legislation that would ban the sale of flavored vaping products. Previously passed by the Senate, the bill now moves to the desk of Governor David Ige, a Democrat. If he signs it, Hawaii will become the fifth state to prohibit flavored e-cigarettes, joining Rhode Island, New Jersey, New York and Massachusetts. [...] The industry and consumer advocates, of course, oppose the bill on the grounds that it will strip from the market the flavored products that adults prefer to help them switch from cigarettes—deterring the adoption of safer products and prompting current vapers to potentially return to smoking. [...]

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Many vaping activists believe that one reason for most misconceptions about vaping is the way in which the media covers the issue. Ordinary people are constantly exposed to claims that vaping causes erectile dysfunction, makes you blind or is the cause of EVALI. While at the same time, almost nobody covers the fact that about 82 million smokers have been able to quit thanks to vaping. One of the most significant public health victories in the last few decades (...)

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Brazil’s public health agency, ANVISA, has been consulting on whether the long-standing policy of prohibition of vaping products should be retained or lifted. [...] Unfortunately, it looks like the Brazilian authorities have allowed too much tobacco control prohibitionist rhetoric and pseudoscience to influence their posture.

The basic options are:

Maintain prohibition
Maintain prohibition but with enhanced communication and education
Legalise and regulate the manufacture, import and sale of vaping products.
The fundamental issue is that the Brazilian authorities are not recognising the interaction between smoking and smoke-free products – i.e. tobacco harm reduction.

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Many policy experts and researchers have rightly pointed out that for years, the United States has relied on an abstinence-only approach to tobacco, drugs and sex, and the results have been embarrassingly bad. Simply put, while abstinence may be the safest course of action, many just don’t—and will never—practice it. In light of this, it’s important to consider underused tools: consistent harm reduction strategies. These don’t seek to eliminate harm through abstinence, but (...)

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Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor’s term as chief executive has been marked by tumultuous events. But in terms of public health, a decade or two from now she may also be remembered for her role in the ban on the import and sale of e-cigarettes and other alternatives that has just become law. The ban, first proposed seven years ago, was watered down in 2018 to the permissive regulation that applies to tobacco products. Opposition to the backdown from medical and education authorities prompted Lam to switch to proposing the full ban in her policy address that year.

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An important new study published today has found that Australia’s harsh regulatory policy on vaping has SLOWED the decline in smoking compared to other similar countries with less restrictive policies.
The study found that in Canada and the UK, smoking consumption and smoking rates in young adults declined faster after (...)