ASH Daily News for 30 January 2019



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UK

  • Large amounts of illegal tobacco uncovered in major Peterborough and Cambridgeshire operation

International

  • Over 100 organisations denounce Philip Morris’ attempt to “infiltrate WHO policymaking”
  • Juul plans India e-cigarette entry with new subsidiary

Parliamentary Activity

  • Ten Minute Rule Bill – Smoking Prohibition (National Health Service Premises)

 

UK

Large amounts of illegal tobacco uncovered in major Peterborough and Cambridgeshire operation

A two day operation across Peterbrough and Cambridgeshire resulted in the seizure of over 26,000 cigarettes and 4kg of tobacco.

Peter Gell, head of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Trading Standards, said: “Our priority is the protection of the public…people can make a real difference to help keep more illegal tobacco off the streets by reporting it.”

Source: Peterborough Today, 29 January 2019

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International

Over 100 organisations denounce Philip Morris’ attempt to “infiltrate WHO policymaking”

Public health experts from over 100 organisations have urged the World Health Organisation Executive Board to reject an open letter sent by the Philip Morris International funded Foundation for a Smoke-free World (FSFW). The open letter from FSFW invites the WHO Executive Board to collaborate with them on tobacco control.

The letter from public health experts appeals to the WHO Executive Board that “Giving any consideration to an organization that is entirely funded by the tobacco industry would fundamentally undermine the significant health and policy gains made to date on the attainment of the SDGs [sustainable development goals] and prevention of NCDs [noncommunicable diseases] through implementation of WHO’s Framework Convention of Tobacco Control (FCTC).” The letter states collaboration between WHO and the FSFW would specifically undermine “the FCTC’s Article 5.3 which seeks to protect public health policies from the vested interests of the tobacco industry.”

The letter further calls for the WHO Executive Board to “reject this approach, in the strongest terms, and instead reinforce WHO’s 2017 recommendation to governments and the public health community to reject any affiliation with FSFW because of the ‘number of clear conflicts of interest involved with a tobacco company funding a purported health foundation, particularly if it promotes sale of tobacco and other products found in that company’s brand portfolio’ [emphasis original].”

Source: Indian Express, 29 January 2019

See also:

Foundation for a Smoke-free World – An open letter to the WHO Executive Board

Tobacco Tactics – Foundation for a Smoke-Free World

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Juul plans India e-cigarette entry with new subsidiary

US based e-cigarette company Juul Labs Inc is hoping to launch its products in India by late 2019, according to an exclusive report by Reuters.

Juul has begun hiring executives and plans to launch “a new Indian subsidiary”, according to Reuters’ source. The push to launch in India is part of the company’s broader Asia strategy. India has 106 million adult smokers, second only to China in the world, making it a lucrative market for firms such as Juul.

India’s regulatory environment for tobacco and e-cigarettes is restrictive, with the health ministry last year advising states to stop the sale or import of e-cigarettes. Eight of India’s twenty-nine states currently ban e-cigarettes. Juul is studying federal and state regulations that could block its plans, Reuters’ source said, adding that it would engage with the medical community to build acceptance for the devices.

Source: Reuters, 30 January 2019

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Parliamentary Activity

Ten Minute Rule Bill – Smoking Prohibition (National Health Service Premises)

Tracy Brabin MP (Batley and Spen) proposed a motion yesterday, 29th January 2019, for legislation to be implemented which would prohibit smoking on NHS premises. According to Ms Brabin’s speech, the inspiration for the bill comes from the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust which, despite having fully implemented smokefree policies, is experiencing regular breaches, with people smoking around hospital entrances.

Ms Brabin went on to say the bill “is about more than simply installing no-smoking signs; it is about creating a culture that is in favour of quitting. I want this legislation to be part of a package that includes support to help smokers quit or abstain.” She also called for NHS England to “produce guidance on smoke-free NHS policy, alongside implementation procedure” and for her bill to be considered in the Prevention Green Paper, expected later this year.

Source: Hansard, 29 January 2019

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