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Nearly 5 percent of Chinese students in middle schools have the habit of smoking and 3.6 percent of the group use e-cigarettes regularly, according to a survey conducted in 2021 by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (China's CDC). The data was released on Tuesday, the World No Tobacco Day, along with other reports that demonstrate an increasing tendency of Chinese minors to use e-cigarettes.

The survey covered 270,000 students in middle schools and took back 124,119 questionnaires from college students in 31 province-level places in the Chinese mainland, according to the China's CDC.

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Sacramento County’s youth are the focus of its newest law: the sale ban of flavored tobacco. Effective Monday, it’s illegal to sell flavored tobacco to anyone in the unincorporated areas of the county — regardless of age. The ban includes flavored cigarettes, e-cigarettes and cigars along with any flavored edible tobacco and nicotine product. “Mentholated and flavored products have been shown to be starter products for youths who begin using tobacco and establish tobacco habits that can lead to long-term addiction,” said Dr. Olivia Kasirye, Sacramento County’s public health officer, [...]

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Mexico banned sales of electronic cigarettes and other vaping devices on Tuesday because of concerns about their health effects, the government announced. President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said it was a "lie" to claim that e-cigarettes are a safe alternative to inhaling tobacco smoke.

"The vapors are also harmful for health," added Lopez Obrador, who signed a decree introducing the ban on World No Tobacco Day. He showed a pink vaping device to illustrate how the products are intended to appeal to young people.

"Look at the color, the design," Lopez Obrador said.

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During Rodrigo Duterte’s last month in office, we had a bit of good news with our Supreme Court ruling in the case of Ona vs. the Philippine Tobacco Institute, Inc. that tobacco products are health products and therefore are subject to regulation by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). That meant tobacco products are no longer going to be treated like other commodities in the market and are instead subject to stricter monitoring and regulation for their contents, and the health effects of those contents.

 

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Thirty years ago, as a young public health researcher and professor, I would begin my lectures by telling students that 480,000 Americans die from cigarette smoking every year, making it the leading cause of preventable death. Sadly, 30 years later, I still begin my talks with the same fact. In those 30 years, 15 million Americans have died unnecessarily from cigarette smoking. To change this trajectory, it is time for the FDA to embrace bold, new thinking, including offering smokers safer nicotine-containing alternatives.

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On July 26, Matthew Holman, the director of the Office of Science at the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Tobacco Products (CTP), told staff that he would be leaving his role for an undisclosed position at Philip Morris International (PMI).

Brian King, who became CTP’s director in early July, wrote in a letter to colleagues that Holman would be departing “effective immediately,” revealing that the former OS head “has been on leave since before my tenure began at the Center” and saying that “he recused himself, consistent with agency ethics policies, from all CTP/FDA work while exploring career opportunities outside of government.”

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In June, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced plans to develop a proposed product standard by May 2023 that would establish a maximum nicotine level in combustible tobacco products and reduce their addictiveness. The same month, the agency ordered electronic cigarette company Juul to immediately stop selling its products in the U.S., but later suspended the order pending further review. And on July 13, the FDA announced that any new synthetic nicotine product that has not received premarket authorization from the agency cannot be legally marketed. Here, experts from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health discuss the public health implications of these actions.

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Leading tobacco-control experts have urged the federal government to join New Zealand in pursuing “endgame” reforms that could eliminate smoking and dramatically close the gap in life expectancy between Indigenous and white Australians.

As the Ardern government introduced legislation designed to make tobacco products non-addictive and prohibit the sale of cigarettes to future generations on Tuesday, anti-tobacco campaigners said the Australian government needed to shake a decade of complacency and resume its global leadership role.

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E-cigarettes are becoming increasingly popular among teenagers who are not former or current smokers. Young people who use e-cigarettes, or ‘vape’, often use small disposable devices that can contain the maximum permitted nicotine concentration. This article looks at research on the possible adverse health effects of vaping for young people and how the government has said it wants to prevent non-smokers and the young from using e-cigarettes.

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British American Tobacco (BAT) Malaysia has urged the health ministry to include industry players in developing appropriate regulations for vape products.

This comes in light of the Tobacco and Smoking Control Bill that is slated to be tabled in the Dewan Rakyat next week. Last Friday, health minister Khairy Jamaluddin said the ministry had engaged with many parties on the draft bill, including the vape industry.

However, BAT Malaysia said other industry players should also be included in these discussions. It did not name these “other players”.

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What motives seemingly rational people: professionals, scientists, and so-called experts in public health to proselytize and propagandize against safer nicotine products?

Joining us today to pick through this question and more is Martin Cullip, International Fellow at the Taxpayers Protection Alliance and prolific writer on harm reduction policy issues for major publications such as InsideSources, Center Square, Townhall, and Filter.

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With the first reading of a new bill in parliament today, Aotearoa New Zealand’s plan to be smokefree by 2025 takes another tangible step forward.

The Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products (Smoked Tobacco) Amendment Bill will now go to the Health Select Committee for submissions and review, and (presumably) return to the House in late 2022 to be passed into law.

Assuming the final legislation looks similar to what is being proposed, it will mean Aotearoa New Zealand leapfrogs all other countries to be at the vanguard of tobacco control, with policy settings aimed at getting smoking prevalence beneath 5% of the adult population within years (not decades).

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The most famous anti-smoking campaign in history was branded, simply, as @truth. It was launched in 2000 by the American Legacy Foundation, a nonprofit organization funded with $1.5 billion from the proceeds of a class-action suit against Big Tobacco companies. Legacy and its advertising agency, Crispin Porter & Bogusky, produced hard-hitting TV commercials, including one called “Body Bag” in which young people piled bags of dead bodies outside the headquarters of Philip Morris, in a graphic reminder that smoking kills.

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Reducing tobacco use is highly challenging in a country like Bangladesh, where there is widespread use of different forms of tobacco among men, women and even children, and where devious interference by tobacco industries into government systems and policy measures has gone largely unchecked. Every year, about 161,200 people are killed by tobacco-induced diseases. Over 172,000 children (10 to 14 years) and about 25 million youths and adults (15 years and above) use tobacco every day. Non-communicable diseases account for 67 percent of all deaths, and tobacco causes about one in every five deaths in the country.

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Snuff is a variety of smokeless tobacco that is comprised of finely ground or shredded tobacco leaves. It is available in a variety of flavors and scents — attar of roses, lavender, cloves and jasmine, for example — and can be either dry or moist. It is made by grinding the tobacco and subjecting it to repeated fermentations.

Many confuse snuff with snus, a more recent smokeless tobacco product that originated in Sweden.

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As a result, rather than discontinuing their addiction, many end up substantially increasing the amount of nicotine they consume. The good news, the researchers say, is that smoking-cessation treatments approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that focus on nicotine replacement and counseling can help such dual users quit.

In fact, such treatments seem to be effective in dual users as well as those who smoke traditional cigarettes exclusively. [...]

“We recommend FDA-approved treatment such as nicotine replacement, the drug varenicline, and counseling for cigarette smokers,” says senior investigator Li-Shiun Chen, an associate professor of psychiatry [...]

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In a rare admission of what the tobacco harm reduction community has called a bureaucratic nightmare,” Robert Califf, Commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), has asked for an independent review, including an initial assessment of the processes and procedures, resourcing and organizational structure” for the Center for Tobacco Products, as well as food programs under FDA.

 

The review will be conducted by the Reagan-Udall Foundation, a non-governmental organization created by Congress to advance the mission of the FDA to modernize medical, veterinary, food, food ingredient, and cosmetic product development, accelerate innovation, and enhance product safety.”

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The American agency in charge of public health, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), has banned the sale of Juul brand e-cigarettes in the United States. In the opinion of Pierre Bizel, PhD, a member of the Belgian National Coalition Against Tobacco, the intent of these products is above all to increase the number of smokers. There is no scientific evidence that e-cigarettes help eliminate tobacco consumption. To justify its decision, the FDA determined that Juul Labs, with its USB stick-shaped vapes and its flavored nicotine refill cartridges, had not demonstrated that the marketing of its products was "appropriate for the protection of public health." [...]

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South Australia has called for a national approach to tackle the growing use of vapes and e-cigarettes among young people.

Education Minister Blair Boyer will raise the issue with his federal counterpart Jason Clare in Canberra on Wednesday.

"This is a serious issue that needs national attention and South Australia will be leading the charge in getting this on the national agenda," Mr Boyer said.

 

"We're keen to be proactive and forward-thinking as a state government and work collaboratively with the commonwealth to ensure the health and wellbeing of our young people."

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According to the new survey for the Scottish Grocers’ Federation, 45 per cent said they tended to agree or strongly agree the Government should encourage tobacco smokers to switch to e-cigarettes.

Some 23 per cent indicated they did not agree, 23 per cent said they held no opinion either way, and 9 per cent said they did not know.