Advocacy News Politics

Distinguishing vaping from smoking in upcoming tobacco control plan (TCP) is of “fundamental importance”

The UKVIA has welcomed calls from leading politicians for smoking to be clearly distinguished from “non-combustible alternatives” – including vaping – when the long-awaited Tobacco Control Plan (TCP) is finally published.

Members of Parliament also made the case for the TCP to fully recognise the vital role vaping has played in helping millions of people to quit smoking and the part it has in getting the UK’s faltering “Smoke Free 2030” ambitions back on track.

The remarks were made during a Westminster debate about the TCP, led by the APPG for Smoking and Health.

Mark Pawsey, Conservative MP for Rugby and Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Vaping, said his belief in vaping as an effective and less harmful alternative to smoking was underpinned by Public Health England’s assertion that e-cigarettes were “95% safer than smoking combustible tobacco”.

Mr Pawsey said the new TCP must “continue on the pragmatic and progressive path” forged in recent years, while acknowledging “the importance of reduced-risk products in reducing smoking prevalence in our country”.

He added:

“It was very concerning to read through some of the documents for the recently concluded FCTC COP9 and to see a concerted effort to treat vaping as smoking.

“It is essential that we do not conflate the smoking of combustible tobacco with vaping.

“They are entirely separate and should be treated as such…this is something we should fight back against at all costs.”

Mark Pawsey, Conservative MP

Andrew Lewer, Conservative MP for Northampton South agreed, saying that the Government’s Tobacco Control Plan needs to be ‘based on the significant and growing body of evidence’ that vaping is an effective alternative for smokers.

He said:

I thank the Secretary of State for announcing that the Medicine & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has updated its guidance on medical licensing for e-cigarettes.

“But there is still a public perception that vaping is as harmful, and in some cases, more harmful than smoking.”

Andrew Lewer, Conservative MP

Of the estimated 3.3m vapers in the UK, 1.8m are ex-smokers and the remainder are smokers who also vape. There are about 7m smokers in total in the UK.

However, Mr Lewer added the number of smokers switching to vaping had slowed in the last 18 months largely due, in his words, to “misleading media articles, junk science articles and concerns over the quality of e-cigarettes”.

Mark Pawsey said that there “is no doubt in my mind” that vaping has played a significant role in reducing smoking prevalence in the UK, adding: “If the Government is serious about its 2019 commitment to get the UK smoke-free by 2030, the role of vaping must be further reinforced and supported through the new Tobacco Control Plan.”

He also called for the TCP to not be published before the publication of the Post-Implementation Review into the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations or the ONS data for 2021 on smoking prevalence.

The APPG for Vaping has set out recommendations for how the new TCP can embrace those to help eliminate smoking, tackle inequality and help level-up and strengthen consumer confidence in vaping by tackling the misinformation which is presently prevalent.

Mark Pawsey said: “It is imperative that the evidence gathered through this process is properly considered, transparently disclosed and used to best effect before we set a new policy direction through the new Tobacco Control Plan.

He continued:

“The new plan should be used as an opportunity to introduce a multi-category approach that encourages switching to less harmful alternatives where a smoker is unable to quit entirely.

“We know that it is the process of combustion which carries the harm in cigarettes, so we need to fully analyse all of the non-combustible, reduced-risk products available on the market and align regulations for these products as has been advocated for by the Royal College of Physicians. 

“We must do this concurrently with ensuring that regulations fully differentiate between combustible and non-combustible products.”

Andrew Lewer said that he would also like to see more support in the TCP for online vape retailers and manufacturers who need to be able to responsibly promote their products online as well as highlight the health and cost benefits of switching to e-cigarettes. 

John Dunne, Director General of the UK Vaping Industry Association, added:

“The UK is at a perilous stage in its journey towards a smoke free future, and the TCP will be crucial in steadying the ship and getting those ambitions which, after all, are rooted in harm reduction, back on course.

“With highly vocal advocates, in both the political and health protection camps, I feel we are in a stronger than ever position to finally get vaping the recognition it deserves

“It is very encouraging to hear vaping being debated in this way at such a high and influential level.”

John Dunne, UKVIA
Advocacy News Science

Advocates furious after study bizarrely claims that vaping doesn’t help smokers quit

A new study claims that vaping does not help smokers quit…so now tell that to the millions of people who used e-cigarettes to kick the habit.

Advocates were furious after a University of San Diego report claimed that vaping was a less successful quitting tool than going cold turkey, accusing the body of misreporting its own findings.

They pointed to mounting evidence that supported the life-saving alternative as one of the most popular and successful cessation tools available.

The university’s findings made headlines around the world, with news outlets publishing an onslaught of scare stories and ‘one-dimensional’ news pieces.

But advocates were quick to hit back, questioning why some journalists just blindly trusted the outlandish report.

Michael Landl of the World Vapers’ Alliance said that the articles surrounding this study are yet another example that ‘fear trumps facts’ when it comes to tobacco harm reduction.

He said:

“One study makes all the headlines without any scepticism, while a review of 50 studies from a well-respected organisation such as Cochrane barely makes the news.

“Unfortunately, when it comes to vaping, a scary headline is more important than good journalism.”

Michael Landl, World Vapers’ Alliance

He highlighted that even infamous anti-vaping group Truth Initiative’s own figures show that just three-to-five percent of smokers successfully quit cold turkey…not the 50 percent that this study suggests.

He said:

“The fact is, vaping is one of the most effective smoking cessation methods and this is proven by many studies and health organisations.

“Not to mention the millions of former smokers who already quit thanks to vaping.”

Michael Landl, World Vapers’ Alliance
Advocacy Politics

Consumers tell the World Health Organization: ‘Listen to science and people.’

Earlier this week, 100 top experts in the field of tobacco harm reduction – including WVA’s scientific advisor Prof. Bernhard Mayer – sent a clear message to the WHO: The war on vaping and other alternatives must end! 

Dr. Mendelsohn, an Australian expert has clearly made the point that the current anti-vaping approach from the WHO will “lead to more death and suffering from smoking” and he is right! Vaping already helped millions of smokers to quit for good. The WHO must finally listen to consumers and science to save 200 million lives around the world. 

The World Vapers’ Alliance stands fully behind the experts and urges the WHO to rethink its current position on vaping and similar alternatives. We present below our three main requests from the World Health Organisations ahead of their tobacco control conference COP9 in November: 

What consumers want from The WHO: 

  • The recognition and inclusion of tobacco harm reduction methods
  • The right to access and affordability for consumers
  • The effective participation of consumer in discussions at COP9

Millions of consumers around the world have quit smoking with the help of less harmful alternatives. Harm reduction products (vaping, nicotine pouches, snus, and others) can save millions of lives. There is an enormous weight of evidence supporting these arguments. 

Therefore, we request the endorsement of alternative tobacco harm reduction methods and a fair representation during COP9. 

The World Vapers’ Alliance says 

  1. The World Health Organization must endorse Tobacco Harm Reduction
  2. Guarantee access and affordability of less harmful alternatives
  3. Consumers and organisations in the field of Tobacco Harm Reduction need to be heard

To read more on this check out the World Vaper’s Alliance website by clicking the button below:

Read more about the World Vaper’s Alliance:

Advocacy Vaping Blog VOXPO

Stronger Together: Why the vape industry needs to move forward as one

The vaping community is stronger together!

We were joined by Innevape’s Jeff Connell ahead of Vape Live who, at a time when everyone is talking doom and gloom, had nothing but praise for the industry.

In an exclusive interview with Vapouround, Jeff stressed that the vaping community is bigger and better than ever before…but there is more to be done.

He said:

“We are here and we are thriving, but we are stronger together.

“We need to re-energise and get back that fever and passion that took us from ground-zero to a multi-billion-dollar industry.”

Jeff Connell, Innevape

He highlighted that the global vaping industry has gone from strength to strength, but we need to protect it from the likes of Big Tobacco and anti-vapers.

And with the fourth Vape Live event just two weeks away (August 11-13) , we have the perfect opportunity to stand together, help smokers make the switch and keep the community thriving.

Jeff said:

“We are an international industry and this is the biggest show available right now.

“When will thousands of people be able to come together and blow clouds again…it may not happen for a really long time.”

Jeff Connell, Innevape

He highlighted that the platform creates a space for people to educate themselves on businesses and regulations, helping put an end to harmful misinformation.

Jeff said:

“Every single one of us that’s keeping the industry going and convincing people that vaping is the future is saving lives…and the potential of Vape Live has no limit.”

“It’s beautiful, interactive and visual…not to mention that the platform can act as a personal event at any given time.

“It’s one of those no-brainer ideas – like Flavour Up – that should have been there the whole time.”

Jeff Connell, Innevape

Eager to give back to the vaping community, Jeff has collaborated with Vape Live to organise a huge, musical giveaway.

Armed with an exclusive guitar bundle worth more than £700, one lucky visitor could win a stunning Paul Reed Smith acoustic – alongside a set of premium strings and top-of-the-line tuner.

Coming from a long line of musicians, Jeff highlighted the enormous role that music has played in his life.

He said:

“There’s no more powerful a tool to change the human condition than music…I think almost anyone would agree with that.

“We all have a song that brings us to our knees, or one that we crank up on a Friday night to make all our troubles go away.

“It’s the cheapest and greatest gift around.”

Jeff Connell, Innevape

To hear more from Jeff and learn how you could win this exclusive giveaway, register for Vape Live here.

Advocacy News

WVA wants policymakers to ‘Back Vaping. Beat Smoking.’ and save 200 million lives

Back Vaping, Beat Smoking

The World Vapers’ Alliance has launched a ground-breaking new campaign set to save the lives of smokers across the globe.

Its ‘Back Vaping. Beat Smoking’ strategy comes at a crucial time for global public health policy, with both the WHO and EU gearing up for major discussions on the future of harm reduction.

The campaign could help shape international regulations by ensuring governments hear the evidence and see that vaping can help ‘millions of smokers quit.’

Michael Landl, Director of the WVA, said:

“There is a risk that global leaders – under pressure from anti-vaping activists – will introduce laws that would treat vaping the same as smoking.

“This would spell disaster for vapers, for smokers and for public health.

“If they ignore that vaping is 95 percent less harmful than smoking, then they will miss a golden opportunity to save lives.”

Michael Landl, WVA

The WVA is planning on taking its campaign to a global audience, combining digital and real-world activism to promote vaping as a part of public health policies.

It also called on people to demand that global leaders ‘endorse policies that back vaping’, as well as urge politicians to ‘put the science first’ and ‘help beat smoking.’

Landl said:

“Nearly 200 million lives can be saved if the right vaping policies are introduced and 2021 is an absolutely critical year if this is to be achieved.

“It’s vital that vapers’ voices are heard…that’s why we’re taking our campaign out on the road, across Europe and around the world.”

Michael Landl, WVA

Source: WVA

Advocacy Events

World Vape Day ’21: The Countdown is On!

World Vape Day on May 30 is now just a short while away. We at the World Vapers’ Alliance have come a long way since our celebrations for World Vape Day last year. 

This year, the World Vapers’ Alliance will be celebrating World Vape Day with a special focus on the enormously positive changes vaping has made to all our lives. We want to make new friends and amplify the voices of passionate vapers from around the world.

As an alliance representing tens of thousands of vapers worldwide, we are keenly aware of our importance of vaping activism. World Vape Day is a key element of that. By celebrating a day about everything vaping, we want to make a real difference in demonstrating the positive effects of vaping.

This time last year, at World Vape Day 2020, nobody could have predicted what the World Vapers’ Alliance would have grown into today. We have led pro-vaping campaigns on issues as broad as calling on the EU to Back Vaping to Beat Cancer to making the case for vaping flavours in the Netherlands.

Over recent months, particularly in the context of the pandemic, misinformation and fearmongering about vaping has intensified significantly. From misleading studies about vaping increasing your risk of contracting Covid-19 to politicians calling for vapes to be regulated the same as cigarettes, despite the fact that they are 95% less harmful, there has been a constant atmosphere of negativity around vaping.

World Vape Day represents our chance to bring the global vaping community together to speak about vaping in a positive light. Too often are the enormously positive elements of vaping drowned out by negative sentiment.

This is why we chose “Go the Extra Mile” as the theme for our World Vape Day. In addition to a jam-packed schedule of livestreams on vaping on our Facebook, Twitter and YouTube pages, we are asking vapers, no matter where they are in the world, to run, jog or walk a mile for vaping.

Because of Covid-19, we cannot meet in person. This means our virtual run will show the world what we can do thanks to making the switch from smoking to vaping. We want as many people as possible to participate and upload their run with a picture to social media using the hashtag #RunVaperRun & #WorldVapeDay.

Just by doing this, you will be playing your part in what is set to be a momentous celebration of everything good about vaping.

I am enormously excited for World Vape Day 2021 and hope you will be with me to celebrate!