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Biden Administration considering rule to cut nicotine in cigarettes

4/19/21--The Biden administration is considering requiring tobacco companies to lower the nicotine in all cigarettes sold in the U.S. to levels at which they are no longer addictive, according to people familiar with the matter. Administration officials are considering the policy as they approach a deadline for declaring the administration’s intentions on another tobacco question: whether or not to ban menthol cigarettes. Read

Nicotine pouches

4/9/21--To secure the tobacco industry’s medium to long-term future, in light of growing tobacco regulations and a rapidly shrinking cigarette market, transnational tobacco companies (TTC) have been diversifying into alternative tobacco and nicotine products.12 They are also increasingly marketing these products in low and middle income countries. Three of the ‘big four’ TTCs have invested in Swedish-style snus and leaf-free variants called nicotine pouches, which they have promoted as part of their harm reduction or ‘reduced risk’ strategies. Read

Vape seller are using popular music videos to promote e-cigarettes to young people – and it’s working

4/6/21--A recent study uncovered that participants exposed to any electronic cigarette product placement or imagery in music videos were more likely to have used an electronic cigarette in the past month compared to participants with no exposure.the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement of 1998 prohibits product placement for cigarettes and chew tobacco in television, music videos and motion pictures, but those restrictions do not apply to electronic cigarettes. Read

Why FDA’s reduced exposure marketing order for IQOS is not a reliable global model

3/25/21--Lauren Lempert, Stella Bialous, and Stanton Glantz recently published “FDA’s reduced exposure marketing order for IQOS: why it is not a reliable global model” in Tobacco Control to explain what happened in the US and why the FDA process — which followed US law — is not a good model for the rest of the world. They argue that FDA should not have even authorized reduced exposure claims. Read

Democrats urge FDA to clear market of all flavored e-cigarettes

3/23/21--The 43 House Democrats sent the letter to Acting FDA Commissioner Janet Woodcock urging the agency to take all flavored e-cigarettes off the market. The lawmakers want the FDA to ban all flavored e-cigarettes upon further review and nix the exemption the FDA has for methanol and disposable e-cigarettes. Read

Targeting the European Commission: The 7 lobbying techniques of Big Tobacco

3/17/21--This report presents and analyses key contacts between the European Commission (EC) and the tobacco industry (TI) – including third parties in receipt of TI funds, as well as influential vaping groups that are financially independent, but whose messaging is consistent with the TI. These documented contacts, in 2019 and 2020, were accessed via document requests sent to eight separate EC departments, known as Directorates-General (DGs). Read

Disposable e-cigarette use among U.S. youth – An emerging public health challenge

3/16/21--According to data from the National Youth Tobacco Survey (NYTS), 19.6% of high school students (3.02 million) and 4.7% of middle school students (550,000) reported current (within the preceding 30 days) e-cigarette use in 2020 — 1.8 million fewer than in 2019.2 However, e-cigarette use among youth remains prominent and the landscape of devices is evolving, both of which pose a public health challenge. The changes in device type–specific e-cigarette use during 2019 and 2020 was accessed. Read

Flavored tobacco product restrictions in Massachusetts associated with reductions in adolescent cigarette and e-cigarette use

3/8/21--This study examines the associations between county-level flavored tobacco product restrictions, tobacco 21 policies and smoke-free laws prohibiting e-cigarettes with adolescent cigarette and e-cigarette use in Massachusetts, and to assess whether policy effects varied by age. Results indicate adolescents in Massachusetts decreased their use of cigarettes and e-cigarettes in response to local restrictions that limited the sale of flavored tobacco products to adult-only retail tobacco stores. Read

E-cigarette-inclusive smoke-free policies, excise taxes, tobacco 21 and changes in youth e-cigarette use: 2017-2019

3/8/21--This study examined whether the implementation of electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) policies at the state level (e-cigarette-inclusive smoke-free (ESF) policies, excise taxes on e-cigarettes and raising tobacco legal purchasing age to 21 years (T21)) affected recent upward trends in youth e-cigarette use. Results show state-level ESF and T21 policies could be effective for limiting growth of youth e-cigarette use despite an overall national increase. Higher e-cigarette excise tax rates may be needed to effectively reduce youth e-cigarette use. Read

Cannabis, vaping, and respiratory symptoms in a probability of U.S. youth

3/3/21--This study provides preliminary evidence that adolescents' cannabis use with Electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) may have negative health consequences. Lifetime cannabis use with ENDS was substantially associated with higher odds of respiratory symptoms. Read

Vaping pot worse than vaping tobacco for teens’ lungs

3/3/21--Teenagers who vape pot are more likely to wheeze and cough than those who smoke or vape nicotine, new survey data reveals. Reports from U.S. kids 12 to 17 show they have a higher risk of wheezing, suffering from a dry cough, and having their sleep, speech or exercise impeded by wheezing if they vape marijuana products, according to results from the U.S. federally funded Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health Study. Read

Vaping pot worse, than vaping tobacco for teens’ lungs

3/3/21-- According to results from the U.S. federally funded Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health Study, teenagers who vape pot are more likely to wheeze and cough than those who smoke or vape nicotine. Survey responses from nearly 15,000 teens showed that vaping pot increased their risk of wheezing or whistling in the chest by 81%, compared with a 15% increased risk from cigarettes and a 9% increased risk from nicotine e-cigarettes. Read

Rules finalized for new tobacco product approvals

3/2/21--Two recently finalized rules provide tobacco product manufacturers with additional information on federal requirements they must meet to get their products on the market. Then-FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn, MD, said finalization of the rules “is an important milestone in the FDA’s regulation of tobacco products.” Read

Age at initiation of cigarette use in a nationally representative sample of US Youth, 2013-2017

2/26/21--This cohort study examined nationally representative data for 15,776 youth never users and, among them, 11,022 youth who were nonsusceptible to cigarette use, and found that among youth who were nonsusceptible to cigarette use, by age 18 years, 46.2% became susceptible to cigarette use. Among never users of cigarettes, 24.4% initiated ever cigarette use, 16.4% initiated past 30-day cigarette use, and 4.3% initiated fairly regular cigarette use. Read

New report details tobacco industry’s predatory marketing of menthol cigarettes to Black Americans and the devastating health impact

2/24/21--A new report released today documents how menthol cigarettes – which are more addictive, easier for kids to start using and harder for smokers to quit – are a major reason why tobacco use is the number one cause of preventable death among Black Americans and Black Americans die at disproportionately high rates from tobacco-related diseases such as cancer, heart disease and stroke. Read

Associations between smoking trajectories, smoke-free laws and cigarette taxes in a longitudinal sample of youth and young adults

2/11/21--Results of this study suggests that comprehensive smoke-free laws are effective for most smokers but could be supplemented with school- and community-based cessation efforts. Additionally, results suggest that further interventions are needed to increase the efficacy of tax increases for early established smokers and late escalators. The implications of this work include the expectation that a combined approach that includes comprehensive smoke-free ordinances, tax increases, and minimum floor prices may be most effective in reducing tobacco consumption across all trajectories of use, throughout adolescence, and into adulthood. Read

At the speed of Juul: measuring the Twitter conversation to ENDS and Juul across space and time (2017 – 2018)

2/21/21--This study is the first to demonstrate the methodology for constructing county-specific exogenous measure of ENDS-related communication on Twitter and assessing its statistical fitness for use. Results indicate that Juul-related content grew exponentially on Twitter and spread across the entire country during the time when the brand was gaining market share. Read

Altria moving toward entering US marijuana market

2/16/21--Altria, owner of Philip Morris, is preparing to enter the US marijuana market by registering to lobby on marijuana commercialization in Virginia and submitting two US patents for cannabis vaporization devices. Now that cannabis legalization is moving forward with broad public support, Altria, along with other major corporate interests, is moving to lay the foundation to take over the cannabis market. Read

What is Zyn and what are oral nicotine pouches?

2/9/21--Oral nicotine pouches and lozenges are a new category of tobacco product that includes brands such as Zyn, On! Oral nicotine products do not contain leaf tobacco, but the products are still derived from tobacco and contain nicotine. Nicotine use during adolescence can disrupt the formation of brain circuits that control attention, learning, and susceptibility to addiction. Research has shown early age of nicotine use and pleasurable initial experiences are correlated with daily use and lifetime nicotine dependence. Read

Chocolate-flavored e-cigarettes are ‘particularly harmful’ to the lungs, study shows

2/10/21--New research shows chocolate-flavored e-cigarettes are "particularly harmful" to the lungs. In fact, scientists found all 10 flavors tested caused some level of toxicity in the cells lining the lungs, resulting in cell death in some instances. The toxins also significantly reduced the ability of immune system cells to remove bacteria and regulate inflammation. Read

Dirty money and shady spending: How the tobacco industry gets its way

1/19/21--As stated by an article published in STOP. - A Global Tobacco Industry Watchdog, the tobacco industry runs on dirty money. The profits coming in are made by exploiting those in its supply chain, and by selling products designed to addict their users. Furthermore, the funds going out may at times be used by companies to buy their way around regulations meant to protect people. The industry is struggling to stay relevant, and they use dirty money to make this happen. Read

Lawsuit alleges collaboration between Philip Morris International and the supposedly Independent foundation for a Smoke-Free World

1/15/21--A lawsuit filed earlier this week by a former employee of the Foundation for a Smoke-Free World (the Foundation) alleges the Foundation violates the conditions of its tax-exempt status in the United States, and that she was wrongfully fired from the Foundation when she questioned these activities. Furthermore, she alleges that the Foundation coordinates its activities with some of the world’s biggest tobacco companies including Philip Morris International (PMI) and Altria. Read

How a vaping prevention curriculum can help teachers, schools and communities reverse the youth e-cigarette epidemic

1/22/21--Schools and communities have an important role to play in reaching students to make informed choices to pertaining to vaping. Vaping: Know the truth, a national youth vaping prevention curriculum developed as part of Truth Initiative’s nationally recognized youth anti-vaping truth® campaign, gives young people the facts about e-cigarette use and provides resources to quit with This is Quitting, a first-of-its-kind text message program that is already helping nearly 250,000 young people. Read

The youth vaping epidemic: From science to public policy

2/10/21--Even in the midst of Covid-19, teenagers are still vaping in high numbers, putting their health at risk. This youth vaping epidemic highlights the urgent need to understand the science of nicotine addiction and the potential long term health effects of compounds found in vapes. This symposium will convene experts from academic, clinical, public health, and policy communities to discuss new approaches for prevention — with a focus on emerging science to support evidence-based policy recommendations. Read

Recalls and Notifications

1/20/21--HEXO Operations Inc. is voluntarily recalling three SKUs of their all-in-one vape pens due to a hardware defect. This is a voluntary recall due to product quality, in which prolonged auto-ignition may lead to excess heat in the battery cell, which in turn may cause melting of the plastic shell. Please note that HEXO vape distillate, along with HEXO vape cartridge hardware are not impacted by this voluntary recall. Read

California Flavored Tobacco Products Ban Referendum (2022)

1/22/21--The California Flavored Tobacco Products Ban Referendum is on the ballot in California as a veto referendum on November 8, 2022. Proponents of the veto referendum seek to overturn Senate Bill 793 (SB 793), which was signed into law on August 28, 2020 and designed to ban the sale of flavored tobacco products and tobacco product flavor enhancers with a few exceptions. Retailers would be fined $250 for each sale violating the law. Read

How health groups defeated Juul’s effort to rewrite San Francisco’s e-cigarettes regulations

1/23/21--In 2019, Juul undertook an aggressive effort to rewrite San Francisco’s e-cigarette regulations and prohibit the City from enacting new rules without requiring that the new rules be taken to an expensive direct vote of the people. Health groups benefitted from having an established campaign network that recently defended the flavor ban, arguing that Juul’s measure could nullify San Francisco’s prohibition on selling flavored tobacco products. Read

E-cigarettes are NOT safe and vaping harms health, World Health Organization rules

1/22/21--The World Health Organization has issued their latest, hard-hitting warning about vaping and concludes that e-cigarettes are not safe and do increase the risk of heart disease and lung problems. The organization said there is ‘no doubt’ that e-cigarettes are harmful, but said it was too early to tell the long-term impact. Read

Chemicals in e-cigarettes disrupt the gut barrier and trigger inflammation

1/7/21--New research indicates the chemicals found in e-cigarettes disrupt the gut barrier and trigger inflammation in the body, potentially leading to a variety of health concerns. The study found that chronic use of nicotine-free e-cigarettes led to a "leaky gut," in which microbes and other molecules seep out of the intestines, resulting in chronic inflammation. Read

Young people who vape are ‘three times as likely’ to become cigarette smokers later in life

1/11/21--Young vapers are much more likely to become daily cigarette smokers in the future, according to a new study. Researchers have found that 12 to 24-year old vapers were three times as likely to become daily cigarette smokers in the future. Read

Vape store body lobbies government for essential retailer status

1/6/21--Trade body the UK Vaping Industry Association is lobbying government to classify vape shops as essential retailers. The lobbying effort has been ongoing since the first national lockdown in March, but the association has redoubled its efforts, warning that former smokers who have made the switch to electronic alternatives “could be tempted back”. Read

A good time to quit: Smoking and vaping amid COVID-19

1/19/21--Multiple studies have shown that smoking is associated with increased severity of COVID-19 disease. However, because vaping, which is the use of nicotine-containing electronic or e-cigarette products, is relatively new, there is less data. Yet, physicians are adamantly advising patients to do all they can to remain healthy—including not smoking or vaping. Read .

Assessment of nicotine and cannabis vaping and respiratory symptoms in young adults

12/22/20--Findings of this cross-sectional study suggest that cannabis vaping is associated with increased risk of bronchitic symptoms and wheeze in young adults. Further research is needed to understand the temporality of the association and the mechanisms underlying the difference between nicotine and cannabis vaping in the risk of bronchitic symptoms and wheeze. Read

Congress extends ban on mailing cigs to include all e-cigs, including marijuana vapes

12/23/20--The recent legislation Congress passed to fund the government included a provision extending the PACT Act’s prohibition on sending cigarettes through the mail to include e-cigarettes. The law also requires FedEx, UPS and other delivery services to verifying age of the recipient in person and getting a signature before delivering e-cigarettes. Read

Vaping could cloud your thoughts, new studies suggest

12/28/20--Two new studies from the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) have uncovered an association between vaping and mental fog. Both adults and kids who vape were more likely to report difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions than their non-vaping, non-smoking peers. It also appeared that kids were more likely to experience mental fog if they started vaping before the age of 14. Read

Underage youth and young adult e-cigarette use and access before and during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic

12/3/20--In a national, online, cross-sectional survey study of 2167 youth and young adults using e-cigarettes, 1198 respondents reported changing their amount of e-cigarette use, with 810 reducing or quitting e-cigarette use. During the COVID-19 pandemic, youth e-cigarette users reported changes in e-cigarette use, point-of-purchase, and ability to purchase e-cigarettes without age verification. Read

Teens and young adults quitting e-cigarettes during pandemic

12/3/20--Results from a national, cross-sectional survey showed a decrease in e-cigarette use among teens and young adults during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study published in JAMA Network Open. Read

Trends in tobacco use among adolescents by grade, sex, and race, 1991 – 2019

12/2/20--In this cross-sectional study of 1,297,362 US adolescents surveyed between 2011 and 2019, past 30-day and daily use of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco decreased more rapidly since 2012 as e-cigarette use began to increase. Smoking and smokeless tobacco use reached historically low levels among adolescents in the US. Read

Declines in Electronic Cigarette Use Among US Youth in the Era of COVID-19 — A Critical Opportunity to Stop Youth Vaping in Its Tracks

12/3/20--A new study by Gaiha and colleagues examines the associations of the COVID-19 pandemic with patterns of youth e-cigarette use, drawing on a national sample of 2167 underage youth and young adults sampled between May 6 and 14, 2020. Among the key findings of the study were that more than half of participants (1198 ) reported change in their e-cigarette use since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Among 1197 participants reporting on the type of change, one-third of youth (388 participants ) quit vaping, and another one-third (422 participants ) reduced their use of e-cigarettes. Read

Reactions to messages about smoking, vaping and COVID-19: two national experiments

11/23/20--Results of this study indicate that messages linking smoking with COVID-19 may hold promise for discouraging smoking and may have the added benefit of also discouraging vaping. Read

The Risks of Another Epidemic: Teenage Vaping

11/23/20--Although self-reported use of e-cigarettes by high school and middle school students decreased over the past year, Dr. Robert R. Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cautioned, “Youth e-cigarette use remains an epidemic.” Read

E-cigarette use associated with asthma independent of cigarette smoking and marijuana in a 2017 national sample of adolescents

10/1/20--In a study examining health consequences of e-cigarette use in adolescence with asthma, results indicate that e-cigarette use was significantly associated with asthma in recent data on adolescents, controlling for several disease-relevant covariates. The results are consistent with studies based on previous generations of e-cigarettes and support the significance of e-cigarettes as a continuing public health concern. Read

Cannabis company Aphria to acquire SweetWater Brewing for $300M

11/4/20--Canadian cannabis giant Aphria is expanding into the U.S. with its $300 million acquisition of SweetWater Brewing Company, according to a release. The deal is expected to close by the end of 2020. Based on volume, SweetWater Brewing is one of the biggest independent craft brewers in the U.S. Aphria has several medical and adult-use cannabis brands in Canada. Read

Why Canadian cannabis firm Aphria bought US craft brewer for $300M: Q&A with CFO Carl Merton

11/5/20--Aphria’s deal to buy Atlanta-based SweetWater Brewing Co. is believed to be the first time a large Canadian cannabis company reached across the border to buy a successful craft brewer. Marijuana Business Daily spoke with Aphria Chief Financial Officer Carl Merton about the rationale for the acquisition, and the company’s future plans in the U.S. market. Read

Broad range of studies show e-cigs increase lung disease risk by 40-50%

11/6/20--A systematic review and meta-analysis of results on respiratory disorder was conducted from studies of general-population samples in consideration of mapping the results to findings about biological processes linked to e-cigarettes in controlled laboratory studies. This study concludes that e-cigarette use has consequences for asthma and COPD, which is of significant concern for respirology and public health. Read

Trends in the age of cigarette smoking initiation among young adults in the US from 2002 to 2018

10/6/20--In this repeated cross-sectional study including 71,756 young adults aged 22 to 23 years, the proportion of ever smokers who initiated cigarette smoking in early adulthood more than doubled between 2002 and 2018, and the proportion of daily cigarette smokers who transitioned to daily smoking in early adulthood also increased from 38.7% in 2002 to 55.9% in 2018. Read

Young adults as a tobacco control priority population in the US

10/6/20--This study by Barrington-Trimis et al used data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health to examine the proportion of young adult cigarette smokers (aged 22-23 years) who initiated smoking in young adulthood from 2002 to 2018. Barrington-Trimis and colleagues found that during this period with population-level declines in cigarette smoking among youth and young adults, the average age of smoking initiation and the proportion of new initiates and daily smokers who were young adults increased. Read

Cannabis

11/9/20--As published in Tobacco Tactics, the tobacco industry has long-standing interest in cannabis as a potential product. Internal industry documents reveal that since 1970, Philip Morris International, British American Tobacco, and RJ Reynolds have been interested in commercial cannabis manufacture. Furthermore, as sited in a recent Huffington Post article by Kevin Sabet, in the US where recreational cannabis is now legal in 11 states, 4 tobacco companies have leant their support to pro-cannabis groups lobbying for legalization. Read

Crooked Nine: Nine ways the tobacco industry undermines health policy

9/26/20--Crooked Nine outlines the nine ways the tobacco industry undermines the policies that reduce smoking and ultimately save lives. STOP researchers documented examples in nearly 30 countries and at the United Nations. This report will enable readers to predict what the industry will do and prepare accordingly, draw on lessons learned from around the world, and suggested actions to counteract the industry. Read

2.3% of US population reports current e-cigarette use

10/28/20--According to data published in JAMA Network Open, the prevalence of e-cigarette use increased from 2018 to 2019 among current, former and never adult smokers in the United States. Researchers examined the distribution of e-cigarette use among 135,211 adults (mean age, 47.5 years; 52% women) from the 2018-2019 Tobacco Use Supplement to the Current Population Survey to examine current e-cigarette use by demographic characteristics and cigarette smoking status. Read

Online popularity of JUUL and Puff Bars in the USA: 2019–2020

11/4/20--The popularity of Puff Bar on Google Search suggests that users may replace cartridge-based vaping products with disposable e-cigarettes in the circumvention of the partial flavour ban. Continuous surveillance and further assessment are needed to prevent potential loopholes in tobacco regulation. Read

Content analysis of instagram posts by leading cannabis vaporizer brands

10/19/20--According to a study, cannabis vaporizer companies reach thousands of consumers through brand-owned social media accounts. Strategies to promote their products on these channels include posts that may appeal to sociodemographic groups and leveraging social media influencers and other companies to increase overall reach. Read

Reduce your risk of serious lung disease caused by corona virus quitting smoking and vaping

10/18/20--As of April 28, 2020 there were 19 peer reviewed papers that had data on smoking and COVID disease progression, 17 from China, 1 from Korea, and 1 from the US. This peer reviewed meta-analysis of these 19 papers found that smoking was associated with more than a doubling of odds of disease progression in people who had already developed COVID. Read

Tracing the racist tactics of the tobacco industry

10/16/20--In a calling to end Big Tobacco’s racism, truth partnered with Black community members and activists to launch its latest campaign Read Between the Lies. Led and promoted by Black voices, the campaign includes videos featuring Black voices reading and reacting to actual quotes from tobacco industry executives revealing the deliberate and exploitive ways they target the Black community. Read

Tobacco Explained

10/20/20--Thousands of internal tobacco industry documents released through litigation and whistleblowers reveal the most astonishing systematic corporate deceit of all time. Tobacco Explained is a survey of the documents, 1,200 relevant and revealing quotes grouped under common themes. Read

Campaign to overturn California’s flavored tobacco sales ban accused of misleading voters

10/20/20--An attorney for the group Tobacco Free Kids Action Fund filed a complaint with state Atty. Gen. Xavier Becerra asking for an investigation of “numerous instances of illegal signature-gathering tactics,” noting that it is a misdemeanor for signature gatherers to intentionally misrepresent a referendum petition. Read

Youth e-cigarette use drops, more warnings issued

10/20/20--According to the 2020 National Youth Tobacco Survey, conducted by researchers at the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, youth e-cigarette use declined by a third after 2 years of increases. It showed that 19.6% of high school students (3.02 million) reported e-cigarette use, down from 27.5% (4.11 million) in 2019. Among middle school students, 4.7% (550 000) reported e-cigarette use compared with 10.5% (1.24 million) in 2019. Read

Tobacco giant Altria is securing technology in new frontier: Marijuana

10/2/20--Public records indicate that tobacco giant Altria has been trying to claim a long-term stake in the marijuana industry by patenting cannabis technology. The parent company of cigarette brands including Marlboro and Parliament filed two patent applications for vaporizer devices specifically designed for cannabis, according to United States Patent and Trademark Office filings. Read

Trajectories of Nicotine and Cannabis Vaping and Polyuse From Adolescence to Young Adulthood

10/6/20--In this cohort study, the prevalence and type of nicotine vaping and cannabis vaping developmental trajectories from late adolescence to young adulthood were similar. Polysubstance vaping was common from late adolescence to young adulthood, particularly among those reporting more frequent vaping use. The findings suggest that public health policy and clinical interventions should address polysubstance vaping in both adolescence and young adulthood. Read

Smoking on TV: Attorneys general call on Hollywood unions for help kicking the habit

10/5/20--The National Association of Attorneys General is asking several major Hollywood talent unions to help "protect young audiences from tobacco use" by limiting its exposure in streaming shows. Support from the Directors Guild of America, Producers Guild of America, Screenwriters Guild of America, Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, and International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees has been requested for this effort. Read