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Smoking in Canada

The Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS) reports a decline in overall daily and occasional smoking prevalence from 17.7% in 2015 to 16.2% in 2017. In 2017 across all age groups, smoking was found to be least common among youth aged 12 to 17 (3.5% prevalence). The CCHS covers the population 12 years of age and over living in the ten provinces and the three territories, with a sample size of 65,000. WHO figures for the general population differ, and show a reduction in overall smoking prevalence from 28% in 2000 to 14% in 2015, and a projection to decrease to 9% by 2025. The WHO published prevalence trend estimates in tobacco smoking, as shown here, in their 2018 2nd edition report, which show slightly different smoking prevalence to the WHO country profiles. Data for the estimates are not age standardised, and were obtained from WHO databases. The trend lines are projections, not predictions, of future attainment. A projection indicates a likely endpoint if the country maintains its tobacco control efforts at the same level that it has implemented them to date. Therefore the impact of recent interventions could alter the expected endpoint shown in the projection. While the methods of estimation used in the first and second editions of the WHO report are the same, the volume of data available for the second edition is larger i.e. 200 more national surveys. The results presented are therefore more robust than in the first edition.

Read articles from Canada

February 27, 2024 by

Stricter e-cigarette and nicotine pouch regulations required for Canadian youth, group says

A health advocacy group, SAAVE, is urging for stricter regulations on vaping and e-cigarettes for youth in Calgary. They call for bans on flavored products, single-use devices, and nicotine pouches, with packaging restrictions. The aim is to prevent nicotine addiction and health issues in children. Dr. Campbell emphasizes the dangers of marketing addictive substances to youth. Dr. Yaholnitsky notes an increase in gum problems and tooth decay due to vaping. SAAVE member Kahlon expresses concern over the appeal of vaping to students. They are hosting an event to raise awareness and advocate for immediate government action to protect youth from vaping and nicotine addiction.

February 21, 2024 by

Opinion: We’ve won the war on smoking – except that we haven’t

It was one of the most successful public health campaigns in history: starting in the 1960s, Canadian governments began educating the public about the link between cancer and smoking, and then creating regulations on the marketing and branding of cigarettes. This effort shifted society, and smoking prevalence in Canada fell from 50 per cent in 1965 to under 11 per cent in 2021. Offices, restaurants, bars and even many parks are now smoke-free – all of which would have been unthinkable a few decades ago. The prevention campaigns that exist are working, and most people aren’t smokers.

February 20, 2024 by

Northern Exposure

The nicotine market in North America is evolving, with vape and oral sales rising while traditional combustibles still dominate. Major tobacco companies are shifting toward next-gen products, impacting combustible sales. The U.S. nicotine market is forecasted to reach $107.5 billion by 2024, with e-cigarettes projected to generate $8.8 billion. Nicotine pouches are also growing, with the U.S. market expected to reach $11.03 billion by 2027. In Canada, the market is smaller but growing, with nicotine sales projected at $12.3 billion in 2024.

February 08, 2024 by

B.C. to remove nicotine pouches from convenience stores

Nicotine pouches, specifically the brand Zonnic, will no longer be available for purchase in convenience stores in British Columbia. Premier David Eby and Health Minister Adrian Dix announced that the pouches will now be sold behind the pharmacy counter to prevent minors from easily accessing the addictive product. The move is in response to concerns about youth using smoking cessation products recreationally and the attractive packaging of Zonnic.

February 08, 2024 by

B.C. restricts sale of nicotine pouches

British Columbia is introducing new regulations to prevent the sale of “nicotine pouches” to children and youth across the province. The rules taking effect Wednesday will restrict all buccal nicotine pouch products to behind the counter at pharmacies. No prescription is required, but purchasers will need to speak to a pharmacist to get it.

February 08, 2024 by

B.C. restricts youth's access to nicotine pouch products

The B.C. government announced a provincial sales restriction for buccal nicotine pouch products, including those under the brand Zonnic. The new rules require these products to be kept behind pharmacy counters, in an effort to limit youth access. Purchasers will now have to consult with a pharmacist in order to buy these products. The provincial government hopes that these measures will help reduce the number of young people using such products.

January 16, 2024 by

Vape inaction 'not an option' despite huge GP need

Packed GP waiting rooms might need to find space for hundreds of thousands more patients each year under an analysis of new vape rules. But as the number of e-cigarette users hits 1.3 million, one state minister says stemming the tide of an emerging health crisis is essential. Under a national crackdown introduced in January, access to e-cigarettes for therapeutic purposes requires a prescription from a medical or nurse practitioner.

December 01, 2023 by

'We were duped': Health minister vows to close 'loophole' on flavoured nicotine pouches

Canada's health minister says he'll act quickly to shut down a "loophole" after Health Canada approved the sale of flavoured nicotine pouches with no restrictions on how the product is advertised or sold. "There are very serious questions about what the tobacco industry is doing here and what their intention is. And it would seem that their intention is to addict new young people to nicotine, which is disgusting," Health Minister Mark Holland said Tuesday in response to questions from CBC News. "We want to shut down this loophole."

November 17, 2023 by

Pushing Limit | Canadian Economist Troubled by Vape Taxes & Flavour Bans

With the province of Quebec now wholly joined with New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and the Northwest Territories in banning or restricting flavours in nicotine vaping products, hundreds of thousands of Canadians now have little or no access to a vital tool for tobacco harm reduction. Joining us today to discuss these troubling developments is Ian Irvine, professor of economics at the Department of Economics at Concordia University in Montreal. Is Canada now hostile territory for nicotine vapers? Find Out!

November 15, 2023 by

What are nicotine pouches? Why health experts are sounding the alarm in Canada

The introduction of nicotine pouches to the Canadian market has raised concerns among health experts, who are urging prompt regulation due to the legal availability of these products to children. On Tuesday, a group of Canadian health organizations, including the Canadian Cancer Society, urged the federal government to restrict the availability of nicotine pouches, saying the product contains “a highly addictive drug.”