The Sunday Times reports that Britain’s entrepreneurs who helped to drive the nation’s switch from smoking tobacco cigarettes to vaping eliquid are feeling the pinch. Independent vape storeowners are feeling the pinch as, on one hand, the new legislation has hit profits and the ability to do business normally. On the other hand, Big Tobacco is using every trick in the book to leverage an ever-increasing market share.
The Times reports: “Barclays agreed to provide Vaporized with a £5m overdraft based purely on the company’s balance sheet. When the bank heard that it was a vaping business, the facility was reduced to £1m.”
The Hill warns that the FDA’s announced intention to focus on saving kids from the evils of nicotine may well backfire: “Instead of helping teens reject using tobacco or e-cigarettes, the new FDA plan would end up discouraging people from quitting cigarette smoking — an outcome no one wants.”
The article explains how one of the most worrying current aspects is the dissemination of disinformation. “Fear-mongering campaigns continue to spread the ludicrous idea that vaping is a greater threat to health than even traditional smoking,” resulting in 35% of adult smokers believing that vaping is as or more dangerous than smoking.
Misconceptions about vaping are important when it comes to smokers making quit decisions, especially if a recent study is to be believed. Researchers from Boston and Detroit report finding the quality of conversations taking place between counsellors and smokers are poor.
As part of the research, academics reported that only 5% of counselling sessions included discussions about vaping. Worse, less than half of those discussions were taking place during the initial meeting, which means far too many smokers are being left uniformed as to the benefits and opportunities of switching to electronic cigarettes.
Challenging the way countries are dealing with the vaping revolution runs to the core of a policy study, conducted by the R Street organisation. In particular, R Street suggests that the governments who are banning ecig products directly contravene World Trade Organisation rules against discriminatory treatment.
Maria Foltea writes: “There is [a] good reason to believe that, as long as traditional cigarettes are freely traded, a ban on e-cigarettes will be found discriminatory under WTO rules. Accordingly, regulators must consider such issues of legality before enacting any such prohibitive laws.”
Vapers are getting used to being discriminated against by more than just governmental regulation. Insurance companies are being criticised for considering vaping to be the same as smoking. In some cases, it is reported, life insurance premiums for vapers and smokers can be twice as expensive as they are for non-smokers.
Linda Bauld, a Stirling University professor of health policy, said: “It is just not fair. As well as being financially punitive to people who vape, it can also send negative messages to those who want to stop smoking. It is not helpful. If vapers are regarded as being the same as tobacco smokers it could lead to an attitude of ‘why bother’ and before you know it they are back at the corner shop buying cigarettes.”