Typically, one line of attack from opponents to vaping is that there is industry involvement from tobacco companies. GFN states: “The conference is funded by registration fees and does not receive any sponsorship from manufacturers, distributors or retailers of nicotine products including pharmaceutical, electronic cigarette and tobacco companies.”
It is the only international conference that focuses on the role of safer nicotine products like vaping, which helps smokers to switch from combustible tobacco. Other products covered under the umbrella include oral tobaccos like snus, and the new ‘heat-not-burn’ devices.
“It is unethical to deprive smokers of additional option to quit their smoking habit” - Farsalinos
This year’s panel debate was titled “Rethinking Nicotine: Where to next?”. Clive Bates, harm reduction advocate, and Dr Sharon Cox, an expert in the drug and alcohol with an interest in marginalised groups, hosted it. Sitting on the panel:
- Greg Wilson – Altria’s managing director of regulatory affairs
- Kgosi Letlape - President of the South Africa’s HPCSA and Chairperson of the Medical and Dental Board
- Jeannie Cameron - managing director of JCIC International Ltd; a UK based strategic advocacy consultancy specializing in tobacco harm reduction
- Konstantinos Farsalinos – “the hardest working researcher” in the ecig field