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Health Minister Simon Harris said the purpose of the ban is to ensure that cigarette and tobacco products for sale can no longer include ingredients that would make smoking "more palatable". From Wednesday, it will be illegal for menthol fags to be made or sold anywhere in Ireland or across the rest of the European Union.

The EU imposed the ban amid concerns that menthol cigarettes are popular with youngsters who mistakenly think they are less harmful because they taste more palatable than regular tobacco.

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World's No.2 cigarette company British American Tobacco said on Friday it was ready to test its potential COVID-19 vaccine using proteins from tobacco leaves on humans, after it generated a positive immune response in pre-clinical trials.

The maker of Lucky Strike cigarette said once it gets approval from the U.S. Food and Drug administration (FDA) for the vaccine, it would progress to Phase 1 trials or testing on humans.

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Altria, the maker of Marlboro cigarettes, reports their data show smokers 50 and older are returning to traditional cigarettes after having switched to e-cigarettes.

This trend is reportedly due to a mix of bad press, regulatory crackdowns on nicotine vaping, and — indirectly — the coronavirus pandemic.

[...] Older vaping consumers, Gifford said, are primarily purchasing discounted cigarettes after the sustained vilification of the vapor product category and the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) push towards the premarket tobacco application (PMTA) deadline.

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‘We are following the science’ is the claim UK government ministers have repeatedly made in justifying their decisions on how to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. These decisions include when to begin and end stringent social distancing and whether to tell people to wear face masks. Ministers get this advice through a complex network of scientific advisory committees. But to rely on science as the determining influence on policy is to misunderstand what science is. And the process of organising knowledge for policy through advisory committee is political, as well as scientific.

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Finland has demonstrated that is it possible to reduce the number of smokers without seeing a surge in e-cigarette users, an issue which has become a public health dilemma for the tobacco control community in recent years. [...] Twenty years ago almost a quarter of Finns smoked daily. In 2018 this number dropped to just 14%. At the same time, e-cigarette use remained moderate – only 1% of Finns said they were daily users in 2018.

Meri Paavola was one of the architects of the new regulations that made this possible. [...]

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Joining us on RegWatch is Clive Bates, renowned international tobacco control expert and master of the counterfactual. Bates walks viewers through the findings of the new studies and provides his analysis of the potential impact on the bitter battle to ban the vape.

We’ll also dive into the recent teen vaping study released by Dr. David Hammond, the campaign to cap nicotine strength in Canada, and how the predicate “better safe than sorry” may be the death knell of western civilization.

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PuffPacket is a new device that gives vapers a wealth of information. The electronic gadget, which attaches to a variety of vaping products, can monitor when and where a person vapes, how deeply they inhale and how much nicotine is consumed. The data can then be transmitted to a smartphone, which records location, time and activity—such as walking, standing or driving. Think of PuffPacket as a Fitbit for vapers.

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Gerry Stimson is a British public health social scientist, emeritus professor at Imperial College London from 2004, and a former honorary professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine from 2017. Stimson has over 220 scientific publications mainly on social and health aspects of illicit drug use, including HIV infection. [...] He is one of the global leaders for research on and later advocacy for harm reduction. From 2010 he has focused on tobacco harm reduction.

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As of today, you’ll no longer be able to buy menthol cigarettes or filters. Click, dual, and skinny cigs are also off the menu for smokers, with the aim to deter young people from being tempted to start the nasty habit.

 

While it may be a win for health, it doesn’t feel like a win for smokers who’ve become accustomed to their ciggie of choice. We spoke to some of these menthol smokers (including myself) to see what their plans are now, and whether the ban will have a positive impact on their habit – and their health.

 

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Smoking tobacco is broadly recognized by the medical community as well as the general public as a major public health hazard. It is the single most important preventable risk to human health and an important cause of premature deaths globally. In India, among tobacco use, smoking is one of the major cause of deaths and diseases, accounting for millions such cases. Smoking nearly affects all organs of the body and harms person’s overall health. Apart from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cardiovascular diseases, infertility, [...] it can cause cancer of all parts of the body. [...]

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A New Zealand vaping advocacy group has asked the Ministry of Health to reject information peddled by the World Health Organisation (WHO) which inaccurately and negatively reflects on smoke-free nicotine products.
[...] (AVCA) has written to Associate Health Minister, Jenny Salesa, calling for New Zealand’s position to support current global scientific evidence instead. "We sincerely urge your delegates to the COP9 to uphold 'right to health' and the implementation of tobacco harm reduction based on factual scientific evidence, as the key strategy for tobacco control addressing the existing gaps," AVCA wrote.

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Consumer demand for tobacco products during the COVID-19 pandemic continued its roller-coaster trend during April.

When the first round of stay-at-home orders were issued by numerous governors in mid-March, including N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper, traditional cigarettes sales volume rose 1.1% for the week that ended March 22.

Those sales were generated primarily by consumers stocking up. That uptick had some anti-tobacco and anti-smoking advocates concerned that the coronavirus could reverse years’ worth of consumption decline during the social-distance phase.

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The John Tung Foundation yesterday called for stronger government regulation of electronic cigarettes and other new types of tobacco products, saying it has received complaints from parents about shops near schools.

The foundation, which is marking its 36th anniversary today, told a news conference in Taipei that it received a report from a mother of a senior-high school student in northern Taiwan about a shop selling smoking accessories that recently opened across the school.

The school has 2,300 students and teachers, the foundation said.

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Join Dr. Marewa Glover and tobacco harm reduction journalist Michael McGrady as they discuss the challenges in the field of tobacco harm reduction and control. This recurring podcast is a look into the work done by Glover and her team at the Centre of Research Excellence: Indigenous Sovereignty & Smoking in Auckland, New Zealand. [...]

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New York’s ban on flavored e-cigarettes went into effect [...] and the state also ended the sale of all tobacco products in pharmacies.

According to WRGB, New York became the fourth state to restrict flavored e-cigarettes and other vaping products, except for tobacco flavors, on Monday over concerns about popularity among teenagers and breathing illnesses linked to vaping. According to data from the state health department last year, use among high school students increased from 10.5% in 2014 to 27.4% in 2018.

 

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In this edition of RegWatch meet Vicki McKenna, conservative talk radio host and vaping advocate. She blasts common sense thinking to millions of listeners each week and isn’t afraid of taking on progressive forces hell bent on destroying vaping.

Last September McKenna went to Washington to testify on behalf of vaping at the House Oversight Committee hearing Don’t Vape: Examining the Outbreak of Lung Disease and CDC’s Urgent Warning Not to Use E-Cigarettes. [...]

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Altria Group (NYSE:MO) is having a tough few weeks. After reporting tepid first-quarter earnings results April 30, the tobacco giant is now facing an investigation from the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC).

Along with Philip Morris International (NYSE:PM), Altria is facing an inquiry after three business units of British American Tobacco (NYSE:BTI) filed a complaint with the ITC regarding an alleged infringement of patents pertaining to the technology of heated tobacco products.

 

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An Asia-Pacific consumer advocacy group has supported the petition asking the Taiwanese government to recognize tobacco harm reduction as a human right in line with the goal for Smoke-Free Taiwan 2040.

The Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates (Caphra) said it was supporting the initiative of the Taiwan Tobacco Harm Reduction Association (TTHRA), which filed a petition calling upon the government of Taiwan to allow tobacco harm reduction products as part of the key strategy for tobacco control.

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Rona Ambrose, Canada's former health minister, has joined the board of directors of e-cigarette company Juul. "Smoking remains the leading cause of preventable death in the world, and supporting the potential of harm reduction for adult smokers is an important goal for individuals and health systems," Ambrose said in an emailed statement. "However, these new technologies will not succeed in eradicating cigarettes unless businesses and regulators work together to successfully fight the problem of underage use. We must solve both."

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For the past five years, New Zealand smokers have been embracing the new generation of less harmful alternatives such as e-cigarettes. The number of adult smokers vaping in New Zealand is growing along with new devices, flavours and nicotine levels that suit the very individual habits of smokers. [...] The Government now accepts the scientific consensus that vaping is significantly less harmful than smoking, so getting more smokers to transition is a desirable public health goal. This mature policy objective has been praised by public health experts here and overseas.