Wednesday, 10 June 2015

E-cigarettes set to be banned in enclosed public spaces in Wales as soon as 2016

A public health bill to be launched on Tuesday will ban the use of e-cigarettes in enclosed public or work spaces.

The Welsh Government said it wants to bring the devices in line with existing smoking laws despite claims there is limited evidence of them harming others. A ban on 'vaping' in public places could be in force as soon as next year while tattooists also face greater regulations.

Using e-cigarettes in enclosed public places could be banned in Wales under radical plans.
The proposals form part of a new Public Health Bill which also aims to make it illegal to hand over tobacco to under-18s.

The bill, which will need to pass the Assembly with opposition support as the Welsh Government is in a minority, could get Royal Assent by next April.
It is thought the e-cigarette ban could be implemented by late 2016.
Concerns expressed

Health minister Professor Mark Drakeford said: “This is not an area in which you should wait for proof that harm has conclusively happened. We need to take action now to prevent the possibility of harm.” It is hoped that the ban on e-cigarettes, which emit vapour containing nicotine and flavourings, would maintain indoor air quality and help in the enforcement of the current indoor smoking ban.

Campaigners submit petition to oppose ban on e-cigarettes in public places
There is not yet a huge body of evidence on the harm or otherwise of e-cigarettes but the Welsh Government is taking the position that it may be harmful and doesn’t want to take any risk of anything increasing smoking among young people.

Similar legislation is in force in Malta, Belgium and Spain but Wales would be the first British nation to legislate for a ban.

'Lack of Evidence'

Anti-smoking group ASH Wales, in a response to a consultation paper on the issue, said: “We should be wary of taking steps that could undermine those who are using them as a means of protecting themselves from the harms attributable to tobacco.”

The British Heart Foundation told the same exercise: “The law to prohibit smoking in enclosed public spaces was implemented to reduce the public health impact of second hand smoking and was founded on a strong evidence base.

"There is little evidence that electronic cigarette vapour causes harm to non-users exposed to it, so the equivalent argument cannot be made”.

Tenovus Cancer Care last year warned that it wasn’t possible to answer whether the use of e-cigarettes in enclosed public places acts as a gateway to the use of conventional tobacco products and that current available evidence doesn’t suggest e-cigarettes were being experimented with by children and non-smokers.

On the side of the argument for a ban, the British Medical Association said “the habitual nature of nicotine may generate the potential of an addictive personality and ultimately promote an individual to smoke cigarettes”.

Thursday, 15 May 2014

European Free Vaping Initiative

European Free Vaping Initiative

EFVP  has just announced that they have received over 80 thousand signatures. We would like to remind all vapers that if you have not signed to support this initiative then go to the website and follow the instructions. It takes less then three minutes to sign.
80k signatures! It is time once again to take a breath and thank you all for your support, especially those who are tirelessly campaigning and working around Europe to move the initiative forward.

If you haven't signed EFVI yet, you can do it here:

Monday, 4 November 2013

Italy’s Crumbling E-Cigarette Industry

How Excessive Taxation Can Ruin a Booming Business 

Only a year ago, Italy’s electronic cigarette industry was booming. According to official statistics it had a three-figure growth rate at the end of 2012, but now, less than a year ago, both small and large businesses are dying out as a result of an imposed 58.5% tax rate imposed by the Government.

 e-cigarette-use Not too long ago, we reported the Italian Government had backed off on its plans to increase taxes on electronic cigarettes and use the extra income to save thousands of jobs in the country’s already understaffed prison sector, following a series of large scale protests. But the vapers’ victory celebrations were short-lived, as apparently authorities decided to go through with the tax increase starting next year. That means electronic cigarettes will be subject to a consumption tax of 58.5%, almost as high as that of tobacco cigarettes. Although the measure will only come into effect in 2014, it has already caused a massive shock in the e-cigarette market, with Italy’s National Association for Electronic Smoking (ANAFE) reporting a 99% drop in requests for new business licenses in the sector, and 123 closed shops in the months of May and June alone. And it’s not just the small businesses that are feeling the devastating effects of the upcoming tax increase. Ovale, one of the world’s largest e-cigarette makers and distributors in the world, has announced a 50% drop in sales for 2013 compared to the same period of last year, and expects things to get even worse, with an estimated sales deficit of 80% in January 2014.

The Italian Government admits that the growing popularity of electronic cigarettes has had a negative effect on the national budget. According to the Ministry of Economy, in the last eight months, income from tobacco taxes has dropped by 6.1% (-455 million euros) in part due to 15% of Italy’s smoking population switching to electronic cigarettes. Legislators and Government officials decided a tax increase on vaping devices and e-liquids was the only way to cut budget losses, but Ovale representatives claim the excessive taxation will do more harm than good. Instead of getting between 60 and 70 million euros a year in VAT and other taxes from this company alone, the income will be reduced to just a few millions. Following the announcement of the increased tax rate on electronic cigarettes, most businesses have put a stop to their expansion efforts, with some even closing shops in anticipation of huge losses.

In Genoa, around 25% of e-cigarettes businesses have closed down, while in Torino, the growth rate of the market had gone from 71.9% in 2012 to -2.4% in June of this year. Massimiliano Mancini, the head of ANAFE, says the repercussions of the announced tax increase is also taking its toll on Italy’s job market. Small businesses are already closing, and even though larger companies are hanging in there, the projected drop in sales will force most of them to move their operations abroad. The head of an electronic cigarette business, Mancini says he has been thinking about relocating to another country, as the electronic cigarette industry is still growing on an international level, it’s only Italy that is in a steep decline. He already made the first step, opening new stores in France and Eastern Europe. There are currently around 6,800 jobs in the Italian electronic cigarette industry today, but that number is expected to decline rapidly in the coming months.

The excessive taxing will also have serious repercussions on consumers, who will have to bare the increased cost of hardware and e-liquid, which will eventually lead to the creation of a flourishing black market. Although the new tax is mainly to blame for the current state of the e-cig business in Italy, producers and distributors also blame the negative publicity in the media. Reports of harmful effects of electronic cigarettes on users, although unsubstantiated and sometimes logic-defying, often have a psychological effect on consumers.

Monday, 1 July 2013

Councils Invest £44m in tobacco

 A very interesting news read from a independent news blog below im sure you will be shocked or not surprised in the least.

Councils are still blatantly exploiting smokers After authorities invest £44m in tobacco is this for real??  


A pair of hands holding a large amount of cigarettes

Health Minister Anna Soubry said in Parliament on Tuesday that it was a widespread problem
More than £44m has been invested in tobacco firms by local councils in the West, despite their new responsibility for promoting public health. Figures obtained by the BBC show that a pension fund administered by Somerset County Council has approved the biggest spend of £21.6m.
Gloucestershire County Council has invested £12.2m, authorities in Avon some £9.7m and Wiltshire Council £1.1m.

Each authority said its strategy was based on specialist investment advice.
The main two companies in which shares have been bought are Bristol-based Imperial Tobacco and British American Tobacco in London.

'Impossible contradiction' Health Minister Anna Soubry said in Parliament on Tuesday that it was a matter for local authorities, but she recognised it was a widespread issue.
She said it was even more important that MPs campaign alongside local councillors now that they have a great responsibility for public health.

In April, as part of the NHS reform, local government was passed responsibility for public health - a term encompassing everything that prevents disease and prolongs life, such as promoting physical activity and better diets, as well as stop smoking services.
The former director of public health for the South West, Dr Gabriel Scally, has lambasted the investments as an "impossible contradiction".

He said: "How can you have a responsibility to improve the health of the population and yet be one of the owners of a tobacco company?
"The only way to get out of it is for local authorities to tell their investment managers, 'sorry we can't have shares in the tobacco industry'."
"Yes they do pay well. But they pay well by killing people and I don't think that's ethically or morally correct."

Somerset County Council said the investment strategy of the Somerset pension fund was based on specialist advice to maximise returns and reduce the need for a publicly funded subsidy.
'Socially responsible' It was a similar response from Gloucestershire County County which added it had a responsibility to ensure it invested in companies which provided the best value for taxpayers and pensioners' money. 

For context, a council spokesman said the total pension fund value in February was £1.256bn.
Avon Pension Fund, which works with Bath & North East Somerset Council, Bristol City Council, South Gloucestershire Council and North Somerset Council, invests around 0.8% of its stock selection in tobacco. 

The four councils delegate responsibility for administering the money to the fund committee, of which councillor Paul Fox is chairman.
"As a socially responsible investor, the fund does take into consideration a range of issues when reviewing investment strategy and appointing investment managers," said Mr Fox.
"The committee regularly considers its position with regard to responsible investing as it continues to assess its investments."

Wiltshire Council has so far declined to comment.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Tobacco Sales

Marlboro maker Altria Start jumping into e-cigarettes after noticing tobacco sales dropping Each Year

The Altria Group, owner of the largest US cigarette maker, Phillip Morris USA, and British American Tobacco have both announced plans to enter the increasingly profitable electronic cigarette business. The two tobacco companies are playing catch-up with competitors Lorillard and Reynolds American, who have already established a foothold in the industry.

People have been speculating about Altria’s intention to join its Big Tobacco rivals in the fight for electronic cigarette users for some time now. Lorillard acquired Blu eCigs last April and their investment has already started paying off, after the e-cigarette company contributed $61 million to Lorillard’s total net sales. Reynolds went a different route; instead of acquiring an established e-cigarette brand, they opted to develop their own product, the Vuse, which has been in very limited test market, but is likely to land on retailers’ shelves very soon. It was just a matter of time before tobacco giant Altria decided to follow its’ rivals example and finally enter this infant yet already incredibly profitable industry. Last week CEO Martin Barrington  finally announced the company is planning to introduce its own electronic cigarette in the second half of this year.
As we recently reported, US tobacco cigarette sales have been declining for years, and analysts predict 2013 to be the national industry’s worst year yet. So it makes sense for Big Tobacco companies to direct their attention to new and promising products like the e-cigarette, even if it threatens to cannibalize their profits from conventional cigarettes. Altria’s first quarter US sales volume decreased 5.2 percent, with its main brand Marlboro tumbling 5.5 percent, so Barrington probably thought this would be a good moment to reassure shareholders that the company is exploring new ways to remain profitable. According to Altria’s Chief Executive Officer, the company “has devoted significant product development” to its own electronic cigarette. Although he didn’t go into details about their upcoming e-cig, Barrington said it would be introduced by subsidiary Nu Mark, which specializes in developing alternative tobacco products, in the second half of 2013.
The Altria boss said that although the electronic cigarette market “is small, of course, relative to traditional tobacco products, there is no denying that adult tobacco consumers have shown some interest in it”. Many of the details are till being worked out and Barrington said that “a lot of that will be defined by what the FDA has to say about how they intend to regulate these products.” It is yet unclear if Altria is planning to actually develop its very own electronic cigarette, or make an acquisition like it entered the smokeless tobacco industry by buying snuff maker UST Inc. in 2009. “It certainly has the financial flexibility to go the acquisition route,”

At around the same time, Richard Burrows, chairman of British American Tobacco released a statemented that the company has begun work on developing electronic cigarettes. “Our subsidiary Nicoventures is preparing to launch its first nicotine inhalation product in the UK and through our recent acquisition of CN Creative, another British company, we are now exploring the development of electronic cigarettes,” Burrows said in his speech at the company’s annual general meeting. He also happened to acknowledge that e-cigarettes and other nicotine-based products are indeed healthier than analogs. “The key here is that the scientific community widely agrees that it is the toxicants in tobacco and tobacco smoke, not the nicotine, that cause the majority of tobacco related diseases,” Burrows said.

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Oh, the Places You Can Go: Traveling with E-cig

Few things are more intimidating in modern travel than the TSA. With their intimidating glare and overly-friendly hands, TSA officers make us all nervous as they scour our luggage for prohibited items—a list that is both long and confusing. Let’s say you are packing up for a much-needed vacation, and see your e-cigs sitting on the countertop. Can you bring e-cigs on a plane? Or do you have to buy new ones there? You may think that something as electrical and new like e-cigs wouldn’t be allowed on an airplane, but in fact, they are. By keeping in mind a few travel rules you can bring your favorite e-cig with you wherever life takes you.

Rule #1: Contact your airline company.

This rule is the very first step you should take when preparing to travel with your e-cigs.
The bottom line is that e-cigs are allowed on airplanes. According to Blogger Bob of the TSA blog team, “E-Cigarettes are becoming more and more popular and I’m happy to report that TSA has no problem with e-cigs being packed in your carry-on or checked bags.”
That being said, this doesn’t mean that you can use the e-cigs while on the plane. Although e-cigs are smokeless and harmless to other passengers, currently airlines include e-cigs in the No-Smoking rule in order to prevent concern and alarm on the aircraft. Also, despite TSA policy that allows e-cigs on carry-on or checked bags, some airline companies have their own regulations about where to stow smokeless cigarettes—carry-on or checked.
Ask your airline company what their specific policy is on travelling with e-cigs, or look at their list of prohibited items.

Rule #2: Stow e-cigs in carry-on luggage.

If possible, pack your e-cigs in your carry-on luggage. Although quickly gaining public attention, many people still aren’t familiar with smokeless cigarettes, and if you stow your e-cigs in checked luggage, they may be discarded when the airline employees scan the bag. If this happens, you won’t be around to say otherwise. By packing your e-cigs in your carry-on bag, you’ll be able to answer any questions that TSA officers may have when the bag is scanned. It may be a hassle, but a few questions are better than having your e-cigs removed without your knowledge. If an explanation is required, with carry-on luggage you can be there to answer.

Rule #3: Separate the battery from the cartomizer.

To make the process go smoother at the security checkpoint, consider separating the battery from the cartomizer and run the battery through the basket with all the other small metal objects, like your phone, keys, wallet, and belt. The Police officers may stop and question you about the device still, but they can just look into the bin to see it rather than digging through your bag to find it. By doing this you can avoid any unwanted special attention and get through the line faster.

Rule #4: Only bring a small container of e-juice.

The TSA prohibits all liquids in containers greater than 100ml on carry-on luggage, so be sure the amount of e-juice you bring does not exceed the allowed amount. Fortunately, companies like Modern Vapor sell e-liquid in 10ml bottles, so just put them in a plastic baggy with all of your other liquids and off you go. If you have a container of e-juice that is too large for carry-on, then wrap it up securely and place it in your checked luggage bag. Be warned though, this is not recommended, as rough handling by airline
employees can damage or break the container
Rule #5: Relax and enjoy the trip.

Well, okay this isn’t technically a rule, but definitely a strong recommendation. And now, you don’t have to worry about travelling with your e-cig.The list of TSA prohibited items is an intimidating one, but have no fear—e-cigs are not on it. So follow these rules, pack up your favorite smokeless cigarette, and set out for the world

Saturday, 22 December 2012

UK's largest tobacco company

British American Tobacco In E-Cigarettes Deal

BAT is poised to buy a company which develops products that provide less risky alternatives to smoking, Sky News learns.

British American Tobacco headquarters
British American Tobacco is the UK's largest tobacco company

Britain's biggest tobacco company is poised to swoop on a pioneer of some of the world's biggest-selling electric cigarette brands, a vital new frontier in an industry buffeted by growing restrictions on its sales and marketing practices.
I have learned that British American Tobacco (BAT) will announce the acquisition of CN Creative, a Manchester-based company which specialises in the development and production of non-combustible cigarettes.
The takeover is believed to be costing BAT tens of millions of pounds, but insiders say the purchase will be of potentially far-reaching strategic importance to the group.
I understand that the deal will involve CN being acquired by BAT rather than Nicoventures, a BAT subsidiary which was set up last year to focus on what it called "the development and commercialisation of innovative regulatory approved nicotine products".
Talks between BAT and CN Creative are understood to have been taking place for several months.
CN is one of a small number of companies to have benefited from the Government's £200m Future Technologies Fund, which was set up by the last Labour administration to give British companies a stronger foothold in life sciences.
Among the Manchester-based company's products is Intellicig, which it claims is the world's best e-cigarette, selling in 26 countries around the world, including in the UK.
CN Creative also manufactures ECOpure, a nicotine-based product, and is developing a new generation of products under the name Nicadex that the company says "will exist under the medicines regulatory framework as a smoking cessation device/drug".
CN Creative is chaired by Dale Pfost, a partner at Advent Life Sciences, one of the company's investors. The company's founders are likely to make a substantial multimillion pound sum from the takeover by BAT.
The tobacco industry's biggest players are seeking to develop credible products which provide alternatives to smoking at a time when pressure on major companies is unrelenting.
New European Union proposals to put graphic images warning of the dangers of smoking have faced intense lobbying from the industry but are widely-viewed as inevitable.
BAT is run by Nicandro Durante, an Italian, who replaced long-serving chief executive Paul Adams two years ago.