ASH Daily News for 22 August 2018
- Stirling study finds plain packaging led to price hike for branded tobacco
- Tax on vaping ruled out by ministers
- Leicester: Hospital patients and visitors smoking in no-smoking areas
- Opinion: Look out, cigarettes have a cool young rival
- Israel bans Juul e-cigarettes citing public health risk
- Thailand: Phuket to launch anti-smoking campaign next month
Stirling study finds plain packaging led to price hike for branded tobacco
Research from Stirling University has revealed that small retailers in the UK inflated the prices of fully-branded tobacco products ahead of the introduction of standardised packaging.
Shops charged more than the RRP (recommended retail price) for fully-branded tobacco products as they became rarer, contrary to the advice of the tobacco industry who were concerned about customer loyalties shifting following the removal of fully-branded packaging.
Dr Nathan Critchlow, lead author of the study, said: “We found that…small retailers sold leading tobacco products higher than the RRPs. In particular, they increased prices above RRP for fully-branded packs as they were phased out – even those which had the prices marked on the packaging. Once the legislation became mandatory, small retailers continued to sell leading tobacco products above RRP. It is possible that they used product changes introduced under the policy, such as larger minimum pack size and removal of price marking, to opportunistically increase the profit from tobacco sales.”
Source: Central FM, 22 August 2018
Journal of Tobacco Control: Difference between recommended retail price and sales price for tobacco products in independent and convenience (small) retailers before and after the introduction of standardised tobacco packaging in the UK
Tax on vaping ruled out by ministers
Exchequer Secretary Robert Jenrick has written to the tobacco industry funded UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) to confirm that the government has no plans to tax e-cigarettes, stating that: “we have no current plans to introduce a new tax on vaping products.”
The letter also highlights that were e-cigarettes to be licenced as medicines and be available on prescription they could be eligible for a lower VAT rate.
Mr Jenrick said: “I recognise the contribution the vaping industry makes to the economy in terms of jobs and revenue to the Exchequer and welcome the fact the UK has a world leading vaping industry.”
Source: The Sun, 21 August 2018
Leicester: Hospital patients and visitors smoking in no-smoking areas
The wife of a patient at Glenfield Hospital has complained about people smoking outside her husband’s room and in no-smoking zones on hospital grounds, despite the presence of a number of designated smoking shelters.
Her husband, who has cystic fibrosis and is on a high-flow oxygen machine while he waits for a lung transplant, has been forced to keep the window of his room shut because of smokedrift from people smoking outside.
Sarah MacFadyen, head of policy at the British Lung Foundation, said: “People with a lung condition such as cystic fibrosis often find that passive smoking worsens their symptoms. This is why we support calls for all hospital grounds to be smoke-free zones.”
Source: Leicestershire Live, 21 August 2018
Opinion: Look out, cigarettes have a cool young rival
Anna Thomson considers the launch of Juul e-cigarettes in the UK following a recent report into e-cigarettes by the science and technology committee.
The US e-cigarette brand, Juul, makes up just over 70% of the US e-cigarette market and made more than $1.1 billion in profits over the past year. According to James Monsees, executive and board member at Juul, the purpose of their e-cigarette is to help traditional smokers cut down on their exposure to the wide range toxic and carcinogenic compounds found in regular cigarettes.
The popularity of the brand in the US has prompted debate about whether the health benefits of Juul e-cigarettes outweigh the risks of introducing a new generation to nicotine. Despite not being advertised to teens, Juuls have allegedly become popular in some US high schools, raising concerns about the brand’s appeal to teenagers.
Following the launch of Juul in the UK, MPs have recommended that regulations on the advertising, sale, taxation and use of vaping devices should be relaxed to encourage more smokers to switch to e-cigarettes.
Sales of e-cigarettes would still be prohibited to under-18s and current UK regulation is designed to inhibit uptake of e-cigarettes among young people.
Source: The Times, 22 August 2018
Israel bans Juul e-cigarettes citing public health risk
Israel has outlawed the import and sale of e-cigarettes produced by US manufacturer Juul Labs, citing public health concerns about their nicotine content.
Israel’s Health Ministry put out a statement attributing the ban to the high concentration of nicotine in Juul e-cigarettes, saying that the device poses “a grave risk to public health.”
The ban, which Juul is planning to appeal, comes into force on September 5.
Source: Reuters, 21 August 2018
Thailand: Phuket to launch anti-smoking campaign next month
The Thai city of Phuket is set to launch a major anti-smoking campaign next month to create a clean environment for local residents and raise public awareness about Thailand’s new Tobacco Control Act.
The campaign, which launches on September 23, will be joined by a number of public and private organisations, including Action on Smoking and Health Thailand.
Phuket City Municipality Mayor Somjai Suwannasuphobna, said today the campaign was developed out of concerns for the health of non-smokers and urged parents to set a good example for their children by not smoking.
Source: National News Bureau of Thailand, 22 August 2018