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The third Ride for Vape began on Saturday 06 July 2022 in Turin, Italy. The tour is a proof of the benefits gained from Tobacco Harm Reduction and switching from smoking to vaping

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The third Ride for Vape began on Saturday 06 July 2022 in Turin, Italy. The tour is a proof of the benefits gained from Tobacco Harm Reduction and switching from smoking to vaping. It culminated after a journey of around 700 km as the riders arrived in Strasbourg at the European Parliament.

The Independent European Vape Alliance (IEVA) said: “This tour is a proof for Tobacco Harm Reduction. Smokers can achieve a lot when they switch to vaping. Not everyone will make it across the Alps by bike, but everyone who switches will find that they improve their health if they stop smoking.”

The IEVA says it is the only pan-European association aimed at uniting national associations, companies, manufacturers and wholesalers in the vaping industry and providing them with responsible representation at the European level.

IEVA’s founding principle is to contribute to harm reduction and public health. E-cigarettes have a significant positive impact and should be recognised as a harm reduction tool because vaping is not smoking.”

Umberto Roccatti is the vice-chairman of IEVA and president of the Italian vaping association ANAFE. He is a passionate cyclist who has proven for the third time what tremendous athletic achievement is possible since switching from smoking to vaping.

Before I switched to e-cigarettes, I smoked up to 30 cigarettes a day for 15 years. With this tour, we wanted to concretely show that by switching to vaping, someone like me can normalise their health, change their lifestyle and successfully exercise,” says Roccatti.

During a stopover in Geneva, Umberto Roccatti visited the World Health Organisation’s headquarter to hand over a USB stick with e-cigarette studies and gave a presentation on harm reduction.

“The World Health Organisation needs to rethink and recognise the potential of e-cigarettes to reduce global smoking rates. Especially in poorer countries we register particularly high smoking rates. Ignoring e-cigarettes means leaving people to their own devices”, says Roccatti. 

At the EU Parliament in Strasbourg, the riders were invited to in-depth talks with MEPs, one of the main topics being the forthcoming amendment of the EU Tobacco Tax Directive. For the first time liquids from e-cigarettes are also included in this directive. Roccatti pointed out the importance of moderate regulation of e-cigarettes.

Our journey was exhausting but successful. The Alps challenged us, but we were able to conquer them. If you can ride a bicycle across the Alps as a vaper, then that is very good evidence of Tobacco Harm Reduction. With my previous smoking lungs, this feat would not have been possible,” says Roccatti. 

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Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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