It is time for the EU to listen to science and consumers

How often have we heard “listen to the science” during the past two years? During the pandemic, politicians constantly repeated that the science has got it right, and that we all should listen and do as told and maybe rightly so. It is astonishing, however, that this mantra does not seem to apply to other areas of science than the pandemic.

According to Public Health England, vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking. This was recently reconfirmed by the largest literature review of its kind by Kings College, which found that “the use of vaping products rather than smoking leads to a substantial reduction in exposure to toxicants that promote cancer, lung disease and cardiovascular disease”.

Additionally, the highly regarded healthcare NGO Cochrane concluded in its latest meta-review of 78 studies that “there is high certainty evidence that ECs [E-Cigarettes] with nicotine increase quit rates compared to NRT [nicotine replacement therapy] and moderate certainty evidence that they increase quit rates compared to ECs without nicotine.In sum, the science is clear: vaping is less harmful than smoking, as it helps smokers to quit cigarettes.

The EU explores flavour bans and higher taxes on vaping

Unfortunately, many politicians in the European Parliament and even more EU Commission officers don’t listen to science. Currently, we are discussing the “Tobacco Products Directive” and “Tobacco Excise Directive” updates. Both of them are also regulating the treatment of vaping. Unfortunately, so far, we have seen anti-vaping policies being considered: possible flavour bans and increased taxation. Both of them would hurt consumers and public health in general.


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Vaping can save 200 million lives and flavours play a key role in helping smokers quit. However, policymakers want to limit or ban flavours, putting our effort to end smoking-related deaths in jeopardy.

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