Warsaw’s Global Nicotine Forum with wide participation of health experts Concludes Its Activities with Recommendations Promoting Use of Innovative Alternative Tobacco Products

The Global Nicotine Forum, held in Warsaw, Poland last month, concluded its activities with several recommendations for tobacco harm reduction and addressing the risks of traditional smoking. The event was attended by a wide range of experts, including public health professionals, policy analysts, parliamentarians, government officials, academics, researchers, product manufacturers, distributors, and consumer rights groups.

During the forum, Professor Clive Bates, a Tobacco Industry Policy Expert said, “We must deal more seriously with combatting smoking using all possible means to help people quit smoking, by using e-cigarettes, nicotine pouches, heated tobacco products, chewing tobacco, and other innovative alternatives to traditional cigarettes.”

For his part, Dr. Colin Mendelsohn, Founding Chairman of the Australian Tobacco Harm Reduction Association Charity, added that it is necessary to promote access to harm-reduction products in all markets and reduce legal and tax restrictions imposed in order to help reduce traditional smoking rates and the resulting significant health damage.

Dr. Garrett McGovern, Medical Director at the Priority Medical Clinic in Dublin, Ireland, pointed out that policies that hinder efforts to help people quit smoking through innovative alternative products need to be changed.

During the conference, a number of participants highlighted the experience of Sweden, where smokers have switched to using chewing tobacco, resulting in a decrease of smoking rates three times less than in other EU countries. They also pointed to New Zealand and Japan, where smoking rates have fallen by half and a third, respectively, following the widespread use of heated tobacco products, which are among the less harmful alternatives compared to the dangers of traditional smoking.”

It is worth noting that the European Commission aims to reduce the tobacco use rate to less than 5% by 2040, however, smoking rates have fallen by only 6 percent between 2006 and 2020, while some countries, such as Slovenia, have seen an increase in smoking rates.

Scientific research has proven that the diseases caused by traditional smoking are due to the combustion process that occurs during smoking cigarettes, which results in more than 6,000 harmful chemicals. In contrast, innovative products such as heated tobacco can represent a less harmful alternative to traditional smoking, as they rely on tobacco heating technology rather than burning, providing an alternative for those who do not wish to quit smoking, while stressing that they are not completely risk-free.

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