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Vape Promotion Pack Insert Proposal

Vape and tobacco harm reduction advocates have been calling for cigarette packs to carry ‘switch to vaping’ inserts for years, and this now looks to be a step closer to happening

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Vape and tobacco harm reduction advocates have been calling for cigarette packs to carry ‘switch to vaping’ inserts for years, and this now looks to be a step closer to happening. The Government has announced that it has launched a consultation to seek your views on the UK mandating quit information messages inside tobacco packets.

The Department of Health and Social Care said: “We are holding a consultation about mandating quit themed information messages and advice (also called pack inserts) inside tobacco packets to help more smokers quit.

“We know from the existing international evidence and practice that introducing these messages can help people quit smoking. So, this consultation is seeking the views of interested people, businesses and organisations on this policy initiative.

“The Office for Health Improvement and Disparities is leading this consultation on behalf of the UK government and the devolved administrations in the UK.”

Researchers, vape advocates and tobacco harm reduction experts have been talking about pack inserts for the best part of a decade at conferences. The idea put forward has been that the tobacco industry should pay for pack inserts targeting smokers with positive messages about vaping, the relative risks compared, and suggestions on where to find more information and support.

The consultation is open to all interested parties – including vapers – and the government will base its future decisions on the responses and evidence it receives.

The consultation follows the government’s recent announcement that it plans to encourage one million smokers to swap from smoking to vaping as part of the ‘swap to stop’ scheme by handing out free vape starter kits.

The questions do not mention vaping but opportunity exists to suggest that promoting switching should be a key area.

Deborah Arnott, chief executive of Action on Smoking and Health told the BBC: “It takes smokers on average 30 attempts before they succeed in stopping, so encouraging them to keep on trying is vital. Pack inserts do this by backing up the grim messages about death and disease on the outside with the best advice about how to quit on the inside.”

Health Secretary Steve Barclay MP is reported the news organisation as saying: “Smoking places a huge burden on the NHS, economy and individuals. By taking action to reduce smoking rates and pursuing our ambition to be smoke free by 2030, we will reduce the pressure on the NHS and help people to live healthier lives.”

Action on Smoking and Health’s deputy chief executive Hazel Cheeseman acknowledges that vaping has a key role to play in smoking cessation. She has said: “There is good evidence that e-cigarettes can help you stop smoking.”

How to respond

You can respond to the government’s consultation by completing the online survey on the Mandating quit information messages inside tobacco packs consultation page.

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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