INNCO is a non-profit organisation that supports the rights of 98 million adults worldwide who use safer nicotine to avoid toxic forms of tobacco. INNCO is funded by individual contributions from thousands of adult ex-smokers and by a grant from the Foundation for a Smoke-Free World.
INNCO says that with the ninth session of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) scheduled to take place next month, it is recommending that local governments proposing e-liquid flavour bans first conduct health impact studies to determine how many adult vapers will return to smoking and how many fewer smokers will quit.
The call to action was made to coincide with an independent study released by INNCO titled, “Analysis of Antivaping Arguments,” which provides health policy makers with science-based conclusions on why bans on flavours and low-risk nicotine products are counterproductive to reducing harm caused by smoking.
Charles Gardner, executive director of INNCO, said: “We know, without a doubt, that cigarettes kill. The ninth session of the conference of the parties is quickly approaching and we strongly recommend that policy makers should not consider flavour bans without first conducting a careful evidence-based Health Impact Assessment (HIA) to determine how many teen vapers may switch to deadly tobacco cigarettes, how many adult nicotine vapers will relapse to smoking, and how many fewer smokers will quit, as a result of such bans.”
Analysis of Anti-vaping Arguments (1) produced five key conclusions:
- Vaping is the most effective way to quit smoking
- Using other flavours have a substantially higher chance of quitting success than the standard tobacco flavours
- Flavours may add to the attractiveness of vaping, but that’s why more and more people (try to) quit smoking using e-cigarettes instead of traditional cessation methods
- Former smokers who successfully stay off combustible tobacco substantially reduce their need for vaping over time
- A flavour ban seems to result in more novice tobacco smokers rather than less.
“This analysis is truly objective and can be used to help make informed, scienced-based decisions when it comes to reducing harm caused by smoking. Tons of research already exists on the benefits of low-risk nicotine products compared to smoking. Policy makers need to be extremely mindful of the impact their decisions will have on the people who already smoke or those thinking about quitting,” concluded Dr Gardner.