European Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates (ETHRA) is launching a major survey. Published in the run up to the revision of the European Tobacco Products Directive (TPD), this is the only questionnaire to survey nicotine consumers, the people most affected by possible regulatory changes to nicotine products. Planet of the Vapes is encouraging all members and newsletter subscribers to take part as it will only take a few minutes.
ETHRA brings together 22 European groups representing consumers of safer nicotine products. It is calling for maximum consumer participation and is asking for consumers to take part in the survey and help with its distribution by sharing on social media.
It promotes discussion and the exchange of information and potential actions to reduce exposure to tobacco-related harm on a European level. ETHRA complements existing organisations by offering European advocates a platform for exchanging information and for sharing experiences and local initiatives, in support of tobacco harm reduction.
The survey is the product of collective voluntary work and the support of ETHRA’s scientific advisors and has been deigned to examine nicotine use across Europe. Launched on Monday 12 October, the survey is available in 10 different languages.
ETHRA says: “It asks questions about the use of different nicotine products in order to discern conditions for users across Europe. The practical consequences of possible regulatory changes are also examined. For example: how users would react to increased taxes, flavour bans, or to the legalisation of snus.
The results of the survey will allow advocates of safer products to collect data on nicotine use in Europe, ahead of some key European Union (EU) regulatory deadlines. The European Commission is preparing proposals to amend two directives in 2021:
- The Tobacco Products Directive (TPD), in which Article 20 deals with vaping as a related product, but prohibits the sale of snus in the EU except in Sweden
- The Tobacco Excise Directive (TED) to harmonize definitions and tax treatment of new products, including vaping, at the request of the European Council. Almost 90% of citizens and organisations who responded to the Commission’s public consultations in 2016 and 2018 had rejected the principle
The proposed TPD changes will be debated by the Parliament in May, and the tax proposals by the European Council. ETHRA says that drawing up a “concrete map of uses and needs based on the responses to the survey will shed light on the issues of possible revisions and provide useful information for the public, harm reduction advocates and, MEPs.”
ETHRA adds: “These issues concern tens of millions of Europeans: people who use safer nicotine products, people who smoke and who might switch to safer products, their relatives, and also social and health professionals in the field. Building reliable knowledge organically from users is an essential part of harm reduction approach. This initiative is part of this successful strategy, being both about and with users.”
Complete the survey here: [LINK]