POTV - Your vaping community

Wanting to join the rest of our members? Why not sign up today!

Register

ECITA in Brussels - updates, news and the latest gossip...

Discussion in 'Health and Legal Information' started by Doodlebug, Mar 19, 2013.

  1. steffijade

    steffijade Achiever

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    Messages:
    3,426
    Likes Received:
    2,167
    I listened to the audio (thank you Ejuicebox) and could I firstly say well done Katherine... your approach was informative, controlled and delivered in a reasonable tone (much more reasonable than I could have managed... listening to the chairwoman's attitude, I'd have been tempted to give her a bloody good slap).

    I was a little disappointed to hear a few of the industry speakers emphasise points that suited their own particular business model rather than the 'greater good'. I was also very disappointed when the subject of flavourings and the usual bs gateway theory was raised by the 'panel'. This is an argument that 'they' are seemingly going to cling to like a tramp to a can of special brew. Great response on the flavourings Kath, and could I just enquire... if the directives are pushed through with needlessly over stringent emphasis on flavourings, will companies like Decadent Vapours still be able to sell their excellent 'aromas' so that I can use them in my ..erm... 'homeopathic oils'?

    All in all, I was disappointed with the attitude of the chairwoman and it would appear that 'they' want to be seen to be hearing from the industry, but without actually listening. The point that 4mg per ml is far too low is perhaps the point they might just pick up on, but imho, that has been deliberately placed as an unrealistic target from with they can back pedal and be seen to concede ground, whilst still maintaining the other excessive controls they wish to impose.

    Thank you Katherine for all your hard work and efforts... even if they were to turn out to be ultimately in vain (which I sincerely hope they won't be), you have presented the case in a sensible, articulate, common sense based fashion.

    You have my admiration and gratitude.
     
    • Like Like x 4
    • Thank Thank x 1
  2. The Electronic Cigarette Company
  3. Doodlebug

    Doodlebug Postman

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2012
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    160
    Last night, we had a most enlightening dinner meeting with a Brussels insider (who will remain anonymous for now), who we will be working with to ensure we are able to get our message across effectively to the right people as this process continues to grind along. There is still an enormous amount of work to do, and we shall be doing everything we can to keep everybody vaping the way they want to - and yes, that includes flavourings!!!

    Today there is another meeting, which is public, so hopefully there will be at least audio available. We shall be attending to listen in, and will give an update when we can.

    One of the buzzwords surrounding this is 'harmonisation', i.e. where everything is harmonised for all the Member States. The fact that there is currently disparity about the levels in various countries (UK 7.5%, France 2%) is precisely why we are asking them to harmonise that bit - at 5%. The vast majority of the regulatory instruments which apply to ecigs as consumer products is already very well harmonised - far more so than medicines regulation, actually, so that's an easier sell.

    I remain optimistic. Yes, there is an enormous amount of work ahead, but we shall continue to do it, and I still believe that common sense (and frankly, self-preservation for the EU) will win the day in the end, and that we can achieve an acceptable outcome for ecigs. I find inclusion in the TPD counter-intuitive, but as long as the level gets up to something we can all live with, then why not? At least it avoids the risk of a specific ecigs Directive for now. (Ultimately, I suppose, one might be needed, but we are too young as a sector at this stage.)

    They have already recognised that reclassification as a tobacco product is not a viable option. Think about it: just as medicines reclassification would drag tobacco cigarettes in, kicking and screaming (which NOBODY wants to do anyway), reclassification as a tobacco product on the basis of the tenuous content of nicotine would drag NRT down that route.... Can you see anyone taking that idea seriously? They have already ruled that out, I believe - even at the Commission level, and we heard that from Parliament too.

    Keep calm and carry on vaping, I reckon. [​IMG]

    Cheers,

    Katherine
     
    • Thank Thank x 9
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Doodlebug

    Doodlebug Postman

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2012
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    160
    Hi, all,

    We managed to split up today and cover two Committee's meetings, discussing the TPD: Tom attended the ENVI one (linked here http://www.europarl.europa.eu/ep-live/en/committees/video?event=20130321-0900-COMMITTEE-ENVI) while I trotted down two floors and sat in the IMCO (Internal Market) Committee meeting, which was discussing it at the same time. (I'm just catching up on the ENVI meeting at the moment, but will try to come back and add a link to the IMCO one and add it here.) ... and here it is: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/ep-live/en/committees/video?event=20130321-0900-COMMITTEE-IMCO

    It is very interesting to see how the conversation is beginning to change. There is still a lot of work to do, but we have a much clearer idea of what we need to do, and how to go about it, so I am confident that we can continue to make good progress.

    We also met with one of the MEPs this afternoon, and they are tabling an amendment to put forward our suggestion to raise the limit to 5% (50mg/ml).

    And on it goes....

    There is a huge political will to get the TPD through in this Parliament. We are taking the position that we want to help the Parliament achieve this, by suggesting an appropriate amendment to the level proposed for ecigs, which would result in a win-win for everyone. Yes, it is a compromise, but we believe it fixes it enough for everyone to remain well supplied with the products they want, as well as keeping the legitimate industry alive and well to supply us all.

    As the week has progressed, we have seen a definite change in the tenor of the conversations - for the better. Even some of the hard-liners are beginning to recognise that the proposal cannot achieve the desired outcome, so I am optimistic.

    We shall be returning to the UK tomorrow, and will be keeping the pressure on to get the necessary work done.

    Cheers,

    Katherine
     
    #23 Doodlebug, Mar 21, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2013
    • Thank Thank x 8
    • Like Like x 1
  5. We Vape
  6. Purplefowler

    Purplefowler Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    Messages:
    17,455
    Likes Received:
    8,368
    Well done and thanks for the regular updates.
     
  7. Doodlebug

    Doodlebug Postman

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2012
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    160
    Trying my best with a truly shocking internet connection! Will be very pleased to get back to the UK tomorrow - Brussels is GRIM!!! ;)

    Cheers,

    Katherine
     
    • Like Like x 2
  8. AnnaLaw

    AnnaLaw Postman

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2012
    Messages:
    560
    Likes Received:
    116
    I hope that that amendment gets passed.
    I heard questions about why eliquid was in a tobacco directive, the answer being that it comes from tobacco. Green Smart Living in the USA makes theirs from tomatoes.
    Right at the end of the morning session I think we had the real reason.
    In 2008 the Pharma industry submitted an impact assessment stating that they were concerned about not having a level playing field for NRT which had cost them a lot of money in getting MAs for. As NRT is now (at least in the UK) accepted as a lifetime substitute for smoking, then the level playing field would be replaced by removing pharma control on NRT.
    But as NRT does appeal to children, children are killed by eating nicotine lozenges. There was a case reported a week ago of a child who stopped breathing after eating 15 nicotine lozenges.
    Why claim that medical regulation makes something safer? Most medicines can be extremely dangerous in small quantities or even when used as prescribed.

    Of course the ENVI makes laws for public health but not a single member of the public who vapes is allowed to say anything.
    I'm wondering if the UK government will say or do anything. Maybe they're waiting for the MHRA report?
    I don't know if ECITA knows of the rumoured leaks about ENVI commissioning a report on all vape studies by next month, an impossible task?

    Well done Katherine, but I wish all other industry reps, especially vendors, had the same message as you.
    It does seem that ENVI were taken by surprise by all the emails from lobbyists. They probably think that individual vapers are funded by some company like e-Lites!
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Bryan123456

    Bryan123456 Achiever

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
    Messages:
    2,411
    Likes Received:
    1,048
    Yes grim, expensive and a schlep to the airport and the Manikin Piss is even smaller than Copenhagen's mermaid. Shame the whole thing's not in Brugge... though in their favour, the Belgians do make some of the best beers in the world and a great variety of them :)
     
  10. BfcDanny

    BfcDanny Achiever

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2013
    Messages:
    1,471
    Likes Received:
    301
    You are absolutely awesome, i have just gone 2 months without smoking for the first time in 25 years due to vaping. The thought of this option terrifies me as i would have to smoke again. I rest easier knowing good people like yourself are fighting our corner. THANK YOU very much :D
     
  11. Doodlebug

    Doodlebug Postman

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2012
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    160
    Hi, all,

    Sorry for the long delay in providing a further update, but as you can imagine, there has been a lot going on! We are continuing with the process of dealing with the European Parliament as they process the Commission’s proposed revisions to the Tobacco Products Directive. As promised, here is a (very!) rough guide to the timeline for the process. This is very likely to change, as at various stages, spanners are likely to be thrown into the works, but roughly, this is what will happen:

    The ENVI Committee has held a debate on the Tobacco Products Directive, by means of the public meetings which we have all been following. The ENVI Committee, led by Linda McAvan (the Rapporteur), are putting together their report. ENVI will be working together to get something which they can get agreement on from their colleagues when the ENVI committee vote is held.

    When the report is completed, the ENVI committee will hold its vote. Other committees, such as IMCO (Internal Markets and Consumer Protection), JURI (Legal Affairs) and AGRI, etc., will offer an opinion in their areas of competence – for instance JURI will look at any legal problems the Directive could face, and IMCO will look at any implications on the free movement of goods and services

    The deadline for amendments is on 6 May 2013, so it is imperative that you make your voices heard now so that MEPs understand that our community is watching what they do with great concern. (See below.)

    Eventually, after a report is adopted by the Committee, there will be a first reading in Plenary, where the proposed amendments will be presented to the whole parliament for a vote. This should happen by September 2013, barring unforeseen ‘spanners’. At that stage, Parliament can suggest further amendments, but is unlikely to, providing the groundwork has been undertaken properly (highly likely, with Ms McAvan in charge).

    ENVI’s key objective at this stage is to make whatever amendments are necessary, without diluting the TPD revisions beyond what they want to see, in order to get it through during this Parliament. This is the task Linda McAvan has been given, and she has a well-deserved reputation for getting results.

    This is why ECITA will continue to work with the MEPs, including Ms McAvan, to offer whatever assistance we can in achieving this aim, whilst obviously seeking to ensure that the destruction of our industry (and community!) is not an unwanted ‘side-effect’ in this process.

    We shall be offering various resources to YOU, (starting with the template letter below) since we feel it is desperately important that your voices are heard as significant stakeholders in this process, and hope that you will join with us in our attempts to help the European Parliament make the necessary amendments to the proposals for electronic cigarettes so that our industry doesn’t have to stand in the way of the progression of this long overdue legislation.

    Thank you all for your continued support.

    Happy vaping, one and all!

    Cheers,

    Katherine

    Suggested template letter for MEPs:

    In an attempt to make it ‘user friendly’, I have highlighted the sections which require input, although of course, you are free to amend it in any way you wish, so that your views are clearly put across. Hard copies through the post are better than emails, if you can manage it, but if you must email, the address format is [first name].[last name]@europarl.europa.eu.

    [MEP name] MEP
    [Your address]
    European Parliament
    Rue Wiertz 60,
    1047 City of Brussels,
    Belgium

    [Date]



    Dear [MEP name]

    I am writing to you today about the proposed revisions to the Tobacco Products Directive. I am a user of electronic cigarettes and I have grave concerns that the revisions to the TPD as proposed will make the products I am currently using unavailable. If electronic cigarettes become unavailable, I will then be forced to either source my nicotine through illegal grey imports, or by returning to smoking. Clearly, this is not an outcome that I would wish. I trust that you will want to ensure that public health is firmly at the heart of the revisions to the Tobacco Products Directive.

    [Write your own story about what electronic cigarettes have done for you, how the choice of flavourings allows you to stay away from tobacco (if that is the case), how medicinal ‘solutions’ didn’t work (if that is the case), how much you value your freedom to choose, as an adult consumer, etc. Do try to keep it polite and fairly short, though. We need to respect their time.]

    I am aware that this issue is now being examined by the Environment and Public Health Committee of the European Parliament, and that a number of approaches are being considered. I would urge you to support an approach that allows electronic cigarettes with a nicotine concentration of less than 5% (50mg/ml) to be sold as consumer products, in order to allow smokers access to this reduced-risk nicotine delivery method. I would be very happy to provide you with further information, if you would find this useful, but in the meantime, may I urge you to have a look at Clive Bates’ (former Director of ASH UK) blog: http://www.clivebates.com/ and at ECITA’s Documents http://www.ecita.org.uk/docs.html and their Science and Safety Information http://www.ecita.org.uk/science and safety.htm. I should be most grateful if you would respond to this letter.

    I look forward to hearing from you at your earliest convenience.

    Yours sincerely,
     
    • Thank Thank x 6
    • Like Like x 1
  12. AnnaLaw

    AnnaLaw Postman

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2012
    Messages:
    560
    Likes Received:
    116
    I have just read a pile of amendments from IMCO.
    They have made some ammendments, the main one being that all NCPs have medical regulation because 'the contents are dangerous' and 'most people use them for smoking cessation'.
    http://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegDa...t_avis/2013/508048/IMCO_PA(2013)508048_EN.doc
    from
    http://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegistreWeb/search/simple.htm?fulltext=2012/0366%28COD%29

    This is a draft opinion, the 'slim cigarettes make young people think they'll be slim' dumped, no online sales, same age limit as tobacco, and 36 months for small companies to get an MA, it seems.
     
    • Thank Thank x 1

Share This Page