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With the release of the administration’s new policy on flavored e-cigarettes, parents across the country have expected us — two volunteer parent advocates who have worked long and hard to promote nationwide action to prevent youth vaping — to be doing a victory lap.

We’re not.

It’s not that the administration didn’t do something. They just didn’t do much. On Jan. 2, they released a watered-down policy that took most flavored cartridges (or pods) — like the ones used by Juul — temporarily off the market, but left tobacco and menthol-flavored varieties of Juul and other pod-based e-cigarettes widely available. [...]

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s2smodern

Doctors have called on the Australian government to further subsidise nicotine replacement therapies to help people quit smoking.

Allowing smokers to use more than one therapy at a time would make it more accessible to those at the poorer end of the spectrum, according to the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners.

Figures used in a new report by the RACGP showed just 6.5 per cent of those in the highest socio-economic areas smoked daily, but that figure almost tripled to 17.7 per cent in the lowest.

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s2smodern

Inhaling nicotine, flavorings and other chemicals from an e-cigarette, known as “vaping,” is growing in popularity. UChicago Medicine addiction expert Andrea King, PhD, and pulmonologist Renea Jablonski, MD, discuss vaping and its effects.

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s2smodern

It’s hard to overstate the importance of the policy shift on vaping announced this week by the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners. In its latest national smoking cessation guidelines, the College now advises GPs and other health professionals to recommend vaping to smokers who have tried to quit but were unsuccessful with currently available medications. Joining us for this edition of RegWatch Live is Dr. Colin Mendelsohn, Founding Chairman of the Australian Tobacco Harm Reduction Association [...]

Could this policy shift be a game-changer for Australia?

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s2smodern

“We cannot sit back and accept a blanket message from Public Health England that vaping is 95% less harmful than tobacco smoking because (a) nobody knows exactly what substances are in these liquids, [...] claimed amongst other things, a letter by Warren Lenney and 15 other paediatric healthcare professionals.

In response to these claims, NNA Vice Chair Louise Ross, pointed out that the original letter was “an argument based on error and supposition” and that it would be more helpful to “consider the positive effect of parents who smoked switching to vaping”.

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s2smodern

President Donald Trump signed legislation in December 2019 to amend the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act by raising the federal minimum age of sale for tobacco products from 18 to 21. “Tobacco products,” in this case, includes both smoked and smokeless tobacco, but also nicotine vaping products.

Protecting young people’s health was the rationale. But will raising the age of sale actually reduce harms for 18 to 20-year-olds? First we must question the inclusion of vaping products in this legislation, when the best available evidence indicates that vaping is 95 percent less harmful than smoking. [...]

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s2smodern

The Food and Drug Administration is banning most flavored e-cigarettes, but that isn’t keeping banana ice, sour gummy or cool mint out of the hands of McCracken County High School students.

Blame a policy loophole. When the Trump administration decided to prohibit fruit, mint and dessert flavors in refillable cartridge-based e-cigarettes like Juul, it carved out a few exceptions to mollify the vape shop owners and adult consumers who complained. The much-publicized exemption allows menthol and tobacco flavors.

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s2smodern

A cannabis legalization bill passed its first committee Tuesday.

The Senate Public Affairs voted 4-3 along party lines to pass SB 115 after hours of public comment and debate between lawmakers.

Even though a number of people spoke against legalization, they were largely outnumbered by those in favor of it.

For the most part, those who spoke out in opposition said they were concerned about safety and health issues like driving while impaired and addiction.

[...] Sen. Jacob Candelaria, D-Albuquerque, took the lead on selling the bill to the committee

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s2smodern

The US Food and Drug Administration received its fourth consecutive failing grade on regulation of tobacco products in the American Lung Association's annual State of Tobacco Control report.

A key factor in the grade was the Trump administration's decision to exempt menthol and tobacco-flavored e-cigarettes from the policy it finalized this month to clear the market of cartridge-based e-cigarette flavors. The final policy was a shift from its September announcement that it would clear the market of all e-cigarette flavors except tobacco.
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s2smodern

With Vermont lawmakers poised to pass legislation this year banning flavored nicotine and vaping products, the tobacco industry is putting its energy and money into opposing just one aspect of the bill: a ban on menthol.

Bracing for the legislation, tobacco companies have spent tens of thousands of dollars on lobbyists to prevent the forced removal of menthol cigarettes and e-cigarette products from the market. [...] in recent weeks, taking menthol cigarettes off the market has become a new priority for Democrats in Vermont, who say the products also get young people addicted to nicotine, [...]

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s2smodern

Despite ban, ENDS (Electronic Nicotine Delivery System) or commonly known as e-cigarettes are selling openly in all parts of twin cities. It is worth mentioning that on September month of 2019, the Union Ministry has issued an ordinance making the manufacturing, production, [...] storage or advertisements of alternative smoking devices a cognizable offence, attracting jail term and fine. [...] According to government data, as of July 2019, there were over 460 e-cigarette brands available in the Indian market utilising varying methods of nicotine delivery and over 7,700 types of e-liquid flavours.

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s2smodern

In a rare move in the competitive tobacco industry, South Korea’s KT&G established a strategic alliance with Philip Morris International on Wednesday, to expand the market worldwide for its heat-not-burn cigarette brand lil. The unusual partnership secures a global distribution network for KT&G, which has been domestic-centric until recently, while it would help PMI enhance its campaign of “smoke-free” cigarette products with the added portfolio. [...] “Our agreement will benefit adult smokers in the world by providing a wide array of better choices,” Calantzopoulos said.

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s2smodern

On 29 January 2019 WHO made substantial changes to its Q & A [on ENDS]. It did not announce this or place any kind of notification on its web site nor did it correct any errors or withdraw its earlier statements. Yet it had promoted the Q & A quite heavily on the day of publication. 

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s2smodern

A grandmother’s Facebook post highlighting the cost of cigarettes compared to a food shop has gone viral.

On Saturday, Judy Lawson shared a photograph of a packet of cigarettes alongside a full food shop comprising meat, fruit, vegetables and cereal among other staples.

At $56.85 AUD (£29.48), the food shop costs almost exactly the same as a packet of 40 cigarettes, which costs $56.95 AUD (£29.53).

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s2smodern

Cigarette butts pile up in parks, beaches, streets and bus stops, places where all types of littering are frowned upon. Best estimates are that over five trillion butts are generated by smokers each year worldwide, and concern about their environmental impact has prompted studies of how they affect water and wildlife habitats. But despite their prevalence, almost no one has studied the airborne emissions coming off these tiny bits of trash.

When Dustin Poppendieck was asked to evaluate them, he was skeptical. [...]

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s2smodern

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is concealing and suppressing information on the number one cause of severe, vaping-related health harm to youths in order to deceive the public into thinking that e-cigarettes are at the top of the list. [...] The chief cause of substantial health harms to youth from vaping is actually not e-cigarettes. It is marijuana or THC vaping.

The hundreds of youth who have become severely ill with respiratory failure from the EVALI outbreak have been harmed not by e-cigarettes, but by vaping marijuana carts.

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s2smodern

NJOY Holdings Inc., which makes NJOY Daily and other disposable electronic cigarettes, has voluntarily halted sales of its fruit-flavored products, according to a Wall Street Journal report. The decision comes as lawmakers and anti-vaping advocates raise concerns that young people may migrate to the devices, the report said.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is barring most flavors, including fruit and mint, [...] But the FDA’s new policy, released Jan. 2, states that the flavor restrictions don’t apply to “completely self-contained, disposable products.”

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s2smodern

To lead us off this week, we turn our attention to San Francisco. Catherine Ho of The San Francisco Chronicle reports that vape shops in the city are “scrambling” to prepare for a sweeping ban on e-cigarettes and vaping products within city limits. According to the report and Vaping Post’s previous reporting, the ban takes effect on Jan. 29. The ban only covers vaping products that contain nicotine and not products that contain CBD and THC. Combustible cigarettes are also still left on the shelves of convenience stores and bodegas across the city.

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s2smodern

Promotional vaping Instagram posts outnumber anti-vaping content 10,000 to 1, according to a new study published in Frontiers in Communication. [...] “U.S. public health officials have been calling vaping among youth an epidemic and have been putting a lot of effort into trying to stop this epidemic by introducing #TheRealCost anti-vaping campaign,” says Julia Vassey of the University of California, Berkeley, in the United States. “But this stark imbalance in the volume of posts has caused the FDA message to be overwhelmed by marketing from the vaping brands.”

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s2smodern

A legislation coming into effect on March 1 is set to lower the excise tax on e-cigarette liquids that contain nicotine, meaning that prices are expected to drop at national tobacco shops. The tax will be lowered from the current HUF 55 per ml to HUF 20 per ml. 

BAT Pécsi Dohány Gyár Kft., a subsidiary of BAT, says that it welcomes the decision, as it does not only make higher-quality products more accessible but help fighting black market liquid sales. Currently, black market sales account for an outstandingly high 80-85% of all e-cigarette liquid sales in Hungary, according to estimates by BAT.