The NNA began the year by being invited to give oral evidence to the APPG for Vaping’s inquiry into the WHO’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control COP9 meeting which was to take place in November 2021. The resultant report, which you can read here, was released at the end of March.
The NNA published a call for supporters to respond to the government’s consultation on the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations (TRPR). The report has yet to be published following this consultation and it was revealed later in the year that this is partly because over 5,000 responses were submitted, the majority of which will have been from consumers. Public Health England released its 7th report on vaping in England, with the press release declaring that “vaping is better than nicotine replacement therapy for stopping smoking”. We welcomed the report in our news article about it here. Our former Chair, Martin Cullip, took part in a panel discussion hosted by the Adam Smith Institute alongside Clive Bates and Mark Oates on how vaping, snus, heated tobacco and other smoking alternatives can play a vital role in saving lives, you can watch the discussion here.
News stories emerged in national dailies, The Daily Mail, The Mirror and The Sun, that the WHO planned to ban open vaping systems. For some reason, some commentators dismissed this as a scare story despite it being clearly stated as a policy proposal in documents presented to the WHO in late 2020. Martin Cullip was quoted at Ecigclick on the issue, saying “This is not an empty threat, especially considering the WHO’s extremely hostile stance towards vaping”. Yorkshire Cancer Research released an excellent film called Vaping Demystified, which explored truth about vaping and debunked misinformation, you can watch it here.
The Institute of Economic Affairs held a webinar on the future of the UK tobacco harm reduction policy. Martin Cullip took part alongside Mark Pawsey MP and Clive Bates. The full discussion is available here. The APPG for Vaping’s COP Inquiry report was published.
Holyrood and the Scottish Grocers' Federation conducted a roundtable discussion to debate tobacco harm reduction, with the NNA’s Louise Ross featuring. You can read an account of the discussion at this link. NNA Trustee, Dave Cross, also wrote an article about the NNA on the blog of independent vape retailer, Vapekit.
We wrote to Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Prevention, Public Health and Primary Care at the Department of Health and Social Care – Jo Churchill – and the Director of the Number 10 Policy Unit – Munira Mirza – to provide a more comprehensive set of policy proposals for maximising the potential of safer nicotine products in order to match the government’s smoke-free 2030 and levelling up agendas which you can read here. This followed our previous letter of October 2020. Louise Ross was quoted in an article on the Kings College Cancer Prevention blog asking if the flavour debate is distracting from the health benefits of vaping.
The Global Forum on Nicotine took place in Liverpool with Martin Cullip one of the event commentators. The NNA also held a side panel at a separate venue on the future of harm reduction in the UK with Clive Bates, Mark Oates, and former Lib Dem MEP, Rebecca Taylor. There is a recording of the NNA panel on YouTube here. The NNA gave written and oral evidence to the APPG for Vaping's Smoke Free 2030 Inquiry.
The APPG for Vaping's Smoke Free 2030 Inquiry was published, with the NNA referenced throughout. You can read the full report here. Louise Ross took over as NNA Interim Chair.
A ground-breaking article was published at the American Journal of Public Health (AJPH) entitled Balancing Consideration of the Risks and Benefits of E-Cigarettes, written by no fewer than 15 past Presidents of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco (SRNT). We wrote about it here. Action on Smoking and Health released their latest report on Use of e-cigarettes among adults in Great Britain, revealing that the proportion of the population who are vapers has increased to 7.1%, amounting to 3.6 million people, two thirds of which are ex-smokers.
The NNA issued a call to action for consumers to write to their MP in advance of the WHO’s COP9 meeting in November. We wrote an article on our blog explaining why we felt this was necessary.
Louise Ross spoke to the Ashtray Blog about media reports suggesting the UK government may raise the smoking and vaping age to 21. You can read the article here.
100 specialists in nicotine science, policy and practice submitted a letter criticising the WHO for their objections to tobacco harm reduction. We welcomed the important intervention by these 100 experts in our blog article here. Louise Ross took part in a panel debate at Conservative Party Conference in Manchester entitled “The Golden Opportunity: How Britain can embrace tobacco harm reduction”, which was recorded and can be watched here. Louise also gave the NNA’s view on the rapid rise in use of disposable vaping products to Ecigclick here.
At the end of October, it was announced that vaping products may be made available on the NHS for smoking cessation, we wrote an explainer on what the proposals may entail which you can read here. The WHO FCTC’s COP9 virtual meeting took place, with all discussion and decisions regarding reduced risk nicotine products postponed until COP10 in Panama in 2023. The NNA had applied for observer status for this meeting but was denied access with no explanation given. No consumer group was permitted to observe proceedings despite the WHO’s claim that the meetings are transparent. Elsewhere, research in Sweden revealed that smoking prevalence has declined yet further, to 6%, largely due to the availability and uptake of snus.
Vaping as a stop smoking aid is included in guidelines from the National Institute of Clinical Excellence for the first time. Louise Ross wrote about her thoughts on the guidelines on our blog here. Louise also took part in a panel at the World Vape Show on the subject of ensuring access to tobacco harm reduction in healthcare.
And finally, in the past year the NNA received nearly £250 just from donations generated by those who chose the New Nicotine Alliance as their selected charity while shopping on Amazon. If you haven’t done so already, please go here to nominate the NNA as your charity and Amazon will then donate towards our activities with every purchase you make. Thank you for your donations in the last 12 months by whatever means you have made them; we are very grateful for your support throughout 2021.