Happy Birthday, ETHRA!

Posted 29th September 2020 by Dave Cross
A year ago, Planet of the Vapes announced the formation of a new campaigning consumer organisation that united vaping bodies across Europe: The European Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates (ETHRA). It has grown in strength over the last twelve months, gained new members and scientific partners, and scored notable successes along the way.

We have achieved much in that time,” celebrates ETHRA.

It is now powered by 22 European consumer groups [link], “all dedicated to defending the rights for adults to use safer nicotine products, all signed up to ETHRA’s five core principles”:

  1. We support tobacco harm reduction
  2. We know from personal experience and science that a variety of delivery methods and flavours enhances the ability of smokers to quit and oppose any regulation that restricts this
  3. Regulation must always consider the minimal risks of harm reduced products versus the large risks of smoking and ensure that these are reflected
  4. We believe that the health and lives of adult smokers and ex-smokers should always be taken into account when quantifying the risk to young people
  5. Reduced risk products need to be affordable and there is no case to apply tobacco excise duties to products that offer a much safer alternative to smoking

ETHRA says: “Working as a consortium of equal partners, we pool our expertise, our dedication, and our passion, and it has led to spectacular results. Our grouping is a voice for our partners who arrange their own revenue and who give their time to ETHRA for free, as we run it collectively and without funding.

Together we have aimed to amplify the Tobacco Harm Reduction (THR) consumer voice in Europe and highlight our commonalities while still celebrating our differences. We are very honoured to be supported in this endeavour by our Scientific Partners, all experts in the tobacco harm reduction field.”

During the first year of action, ETHRA has:

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  • Become a recognised stakeholder in the TPD review process, offering up suggestions and criticism
  • Published the ETHRA manifesto [link] declaring the rights of safer nicotine users in Europe and on behalf of 27 million consumers, translated into our 16 partner languages
  • Written to governments and submitted to consultations, including opposing the Dutch anti-vape proposals and being a key part in overturning Denmark’s flavour ban proposal
  • Disseminated important news and research to keep vapers abreast of events which may affect their right to vape
  • Promoted the accurate risk profile of vaping to politicians
  • Contributed to Europe’s Cancer Plan
  • Fought for vapers and vape shops during the COVID lockdown

We do not intend to relax after our successful first year, but instead to build on it. ETHRA’s Europe wide survey into consumer behaviour is coming soon. The survey will gather the opinions of those affected by possible changes in regulations to reduced risk nicotine products in the European Union. Help us celebrate our birthday by doing the survey and sharing it in your circles.”

To finish, ETHRA says: “We would like to take this opportunity to give a huge thank you to everyone who has supported us and helped to make our first year such a successful one. Let’s make year 2 even better.”

Happy birthday, ETHRA!

Related:

  • The European Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates – [link]

Image by Cucu Petronela from Pixabay


 Dave Cross
Article by Dave Cross
Freelance writer, physicist, karateka, motorbikes, and dog walker
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