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Germany: Minister plans ban on smoking in cars with children

German Health Minister Karl Lauterbach is pushing for a ban to prevent smoking in cars where minors and pregnant women are passengers, German media group RedaktionsNetzwerk Deutschland (RND) reported on Friday. 

RND, as well as other outlets, cited a draft by Lauterbach that will be coordinated with other ministries before he presents it to the Cabinet.

Smoking in cars is not currently illegal in Germany. The plan, which is part of Lauterbach's draft proposal to legalize cannabis, aims to expand the existing Non-Smokers Protection Act.

Germany to legalize cannabis use for recreational purposes

Germany on Wednesday set out plans to legalise cannabis, in a move promised by Chancellor Olaf Scholz's government that would make it one of the first countries in Europe to make weed legal.

Health Minister Karl Lauterbach presented a cornerstone paper on planned legislation to regulate the controlled distribution and consumption of cannabis for recreational purposes among adults.

Acquiring and possessing up to 20 to 30 grams of recreational cannabis for personal consumption would also be made legal.

Big Tobacco Jumps Into Germany’s Pot Industry Alongside Snoop Dogg

British American Tobacco Plc has invested in German cannabis startup Sanity Group GmbH along with rapper Snoop Dogg’s Casa Verde Capital — the tobacco giant’s latest bet on pot as it diversifies beyond nicotine. Berlin-based Sanity secured $37.6 million in the BAT-led Series B funding round, according to founder and Chief Executive Officer Finn Age Hänsel. Nearly half of the amount will go toward strengthening Sanity’s medical business, while the company will spend the rest on preparing for the potential legalization of recreational marijuana in Germany. [...]

Germany approves tobacco and e-cigarette tax hike

Smokers - of both electronic cigarettes and the regular variety - will have to reach deeper into their pockets in the coming year, after the German Bundestag signed off a bill to raise taxes on cigarettes, e-cigarettes and tobacco heaters. On Friday morning, the Bundestag waved through legislation to make smoking in Germany more expensive as of next year - and the price hike is higher than was originally planned. Accordingly, the tobacco tax on a packet of 20 cigarettes will rise by an average of 10 cents in 2021. A year later, a further 10 cents will be added, and in both 2025 and 2026 another 15 cents per pack will be added. 

Vaping Products Face Tax Hike Under German Tobacco Law Update

Smokers buying e-cigarette products in Germany could face higher taxes under a new proposal.

The German Finance Ministry on Tuesday released a draft lawthat would update tobacco taxes for the first time in a decade.

Under the proposal, e-cigarette substances containing nicotine would be taxed like tobacco starting July 1, 2022.
For 2022 and 2023, substances containing nicotine would be taxed at 0.02 euros per milligram of nicotine alkaloids. That would rise to 0.04 euros per milligram in 2024. [...]


Cigarette giant wants dentists to understand tobacco harm reduction

The first point of contact for Germans who are seeking advice on switching to an alternative to combustible cigarettes is a general medical practitioner, a pharmacist or a dentist. However, according to a survey that was conducted by the market research institute Psyma on behalf of PMI’s German subsidiary, Philip Morris GmbH (PMG), more than half of German dentists feel that they struggle to provide advice to their patients about alternative tobacco products, owing to a lack of information.

BAT files patent suits against Philip Morris' IQOS products

British American Tobacco said on Thursday that it sued Philip Morris International Inc in the United States and Germany, alleging that the tobacco heating technology used in its bigger rival’s IQOS devices infringed its patents. The lawsuits in Germany and the United States focus on the heating blade technology used in IQOS, which BAT said was an earlier version of the technology currently being used in its glo tobacco heating devices. BAT has laid out plans to launch glo range of products in Germany this year.

'Thirdhand' smoke a health risk in cinemas, say researchers

[...] Now scientists say they have measured levels of such “thirdhand” smoke, suggesting it is carried on the bodies and clothing of moviegoers and could be a prominent, and lingering, source of hazardous chemicals.

“This represents significant but poorly understood health risks to non-smokers and a source of reactive chemicals indoors,” said Dr Drew Gentner, co-author of the research from Yale University, noting that previous studies suggest thirdhand smoke may account for between 5% and 60% of the combined disease burden from cigarette smoke in non-smokers.

Germany's conservatives back ban on tobacco ads

Germany's Christian Democrats (CDU) and their Bavarian sister party, the CSU, have backed a plan to phase out tobacco advertising in outdoor areas from 2022.

The issue has long been a source of debate within the country's ruling conservative bloc, which had struggled to arrive at a common position and had blocked previous efforts to introduce such a ban.

A policy paper endorsed by the bloc's parliamentary group on Tuesday said the move was necessary to confront "the biggest avoidable health risk of our time."

Germany backs EU plans to make tobacco industry cover costs of cigarette litter

Germany supports the European Commission's plan to make the tobacco industry cover the costs of management and clean-up of cigarette waste, Environment Minister Svenja Schulze told the newspapers of the Funke media group on Tuesday.

"Those who produce disposable items, such as cigarettes, will have to take more responsibility for the garbage in the future," Schulze said. The tobacco industry could be involved, for example, by contributing to the costs of cleaning up beaches and parks.