Continental News

Posted 8th February 2022 by Dave Cross
Swedish advocates are gearing up to face a fight for flavours, something the Lithuanian parliament has now banned. Pro-harm reduction voices are still crying out in Germany as a vascular specialist calls for ecigs to be welcomed but they face greater challenges in France due to the Haut Conseil de la Santé now advising smokers against swapping to vaping.

Stefan Mathisson writes for Vejpkollen that the battle is now on in Sweden for flavoured e-liquids. He says that the government will present its new strategy for handling a number of health issues on February 22 and, come March, there is a bill that includes proposals to ban all flavouring (except tobacco) in vape juice.

The article quotes the chairman of an industry association saying that this is the time for a coordinated approach, adding that “there will be many battles”.

The chairman told Mathisson: “It will be interesting if the government captures its common sense here. They equated all nicotine products with cigarettes. And that's what they fell for. If they listen to the criticism and put a harm-minimising perspective into the ANDTS strategy, then we have good opportunities to stop an upcoming flavour ban.”

The direction of travel for the next iteration of the Tobacco Products Directive is clear as other countries in continental Europe have already banned flavoured juices. The latest to do this being the Lithuanian parliament, passing legislation banning all but tobacco flavours last week – “a move … aimed at reducing sales of e-cigarettes that are growing increasingly popular”.

Voices are becoming marginalised as the individual states of the European Union look to emulate the stupidity of the United States. Vascular specialist Martin Storck spoke out following the recent release of the latest Cochrane evidence update.

Smoore

He said: “The e-cigarette route involves an immediate massive risk reduction. Smoking is the most important risk factor for the development and progression of atherosclerosis, with the consequences of stroke, heart attack or amputation – especially in diabetics.

Of course, complete quitting smoking remains the primary goal. Many smokers don’t even want to quit at first. After decades of smoking in some cases, it is difficult to give up smoking completely overnight – for example after a heart attack or pneumonia.”

Storck pointed to the growing evidence supporting switching to vaping, but Germany appears intent on pushing forward with restrictions at the EU level as France vanishes down a hole of ignorance.

France's Department of Health, the Haut Conseil de la Santé Publique, has completed a 180-degree change of policy direction, announcing that it is now advising professionals not to recommend vaping as a reduced harm alternative to smokers. It now says that electronic cigarettes have no role to play in smoking cessation.

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