“The Netherlands loses the battle against smoking by banning e-cigarette flavours”

World Vape Day on May 30: worldwide recognition for e-cigarette except in the Netherlands

By not adopting e-cigarettes as a less harmful alternative to smoking and sticking to less effective smoking cessation products, the Netherlands is losing the battle against smoking. This is the conclusion of e-cigarette industry chairman Emil ‘t Hart on World Vape Day, May 30. “In all Western countries the number of smokers is falling, but in the Netherlands it is rising. And countries using less harmful alternatives are seeing smoking rates fall even faster. Doesn’t that give you food for thought?”

The industry chairman finds it incomprehensible that little attention is being paid to e-cigarettes as a solution for smokers who cannot or do not want to quit. “In the Netherlands, we are doing much worse than other Western countries when it comes to reducing the number of smokers. This is partly due to the negative attitude of our government towards e-cigarettes. The government believes that e-cigarettes are a stepping stone to smoking, but several independent studies from different universities and real life experience have shown that to be a false assumption. The e-cigarette is gaining recognition around the world as being just about the most widely used and effective smoking cessation product. It is incomprehensible that the RIVM is in support of selling flavour accessories to make menthol cigarettes, for instance, and at the same time advises that practically no flavour ingredients are allowed in e-cigarettes. With such policies we lose the battle against smoking.’

May 30 – World Vape Day
On World Vape Day, consumer organisations, companies and scientists raise awareness of e-cigarettes as a less harmful alternative to smoking. More than a billion people worldwide still smoke and eight million people die prematurely from smoking-related diseases each year. There are several Western countries that have incorporated the e-cigarette into their anti-smoking policies. Well-known examples are the United Kingdom and New Zealand. Compared to the Netherlands, these countries have a much stricter and more effective tobacco control policy. In the UK, for example, 13.8 per cent of the population still smokes and in New Zealand the percentage is 11.6 per cent. In the Netherlands, 20.6 percent of the population still smoked in 2021, which is 0.4 percentage points more than in 2020 (source: Trimbos Institute).

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