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What everyone needs to know about e-cigarettes

What are the health risks of using e-cigarettes?

According to WHO’s 2014 report, “Electronic nicotine delivery systems”, the main health risks from e-cigarette use come from the inhaling of nicotine and other toxic emissions from these products, either directly or second-hand.

  1. Nicotine is the addictive component of tobacco. It can have adverse effects during pregnancy and may contribute to cardiovascular diseases. Although nicotine itself is not a carcinogen, it may function as a tumour promoter. Nicotine seems to be involved in fundamental aspects of the biology of malignant diseases, as well as of neurodegeneration. In addition, fetal and adolescent nicotine exposure can have long-term consequences for brain development. In addition to inhalation, the main health risk from nicotine exposure is overdose by ingestion or through skin contact. Users fill e-cigarettes’ containers themselves, so they, not the manufacturers, set the levels of nicotine. Nicotine poisoning can result from the liquid’s accidentally coming into contact with users’ skin or ingestion by children. The United States and the United Kingdom have already seen a tremendous increase in reported nicotine poisoning, often involving children.
  2. Although e-cigarettes are likely to be less toxic than conventional cigarettes, they produce more than just water vapour. They contain some cancer-causing agents, such as formaldehyde, which in some brands reach concentrations close to those of some conventional cigarettes. E-cigarettes’ impact on health has not yet been determined.
  3. Finally, the use of e-cigarettes increases the level of nicotine and particulate matter (PM) in the air. There is no safe level of exposure to PM for bystanders, and the health risk multiplies with increasing concentrations.

In summary, the existing evidence shows that e-cigarette use poses serious threats to adolescents and fetuses, and increases exposure of nonsmokers and bystanders to nicotine and a number of toxicants. Nevertheless, the reduced exposure to toxicants of well regulated e-cigarettes, used by established adult smokers as a complete substitution for cigarettes, is likely to be less toxic for the smokers than conventional cigarettes or other combusted tobacco products. The amount of risk reduction, however, is unknown.

Can I be addicted to e-cigarettes?

E-cigarettes may carry a risk of addiction to nicotine and tobacco products among young people and nonsmokers. They may promote delaying of quitting smoking, or deter quitting.

Does WHO say e-cigarettes are helpful or harmful?

Sufficient evidence shows that e-cigarettes are hazardous to young people, pregnant women and people who do not use nicotine. At the same time, e-cigarettes are likely to be less toxic than cigarettes for adult smokers if product content is well regulated and if the smokers use them as a complete substitution for cigarettes. The latter would mean that e-cigarettes would have to be relatively effective as a quitting aid, which there is not yet enough evidence to prove.

For all these reasons, WHO can neither dismiss nor accept the use of e-cigarettes globally without further evidence, and regulation is necessary in the meantime both to protect the public from any potential ill effects and to ensure that these products do not contribute to the tobacco epidemic.

Can e-cigarettes help me quit smoking?

For now the evidence is inconclusive. Given the uncertainty about e-cigarettes’ safety and effectiveness as an aid to quitting, rigorous study is needed by independent research organizations that are not affiliated with the e-cigarette or tobacco industry. In coming years, a solid body of evidence is expected to be built that will allow a definitive conclusion to be drawn.

At present, no governmental agency has yet evaluated and approved an e-cigarette product for smoking cessation, although the United Kingdom’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency is reviewing some products.
Before considering e-cigarettes as a potential cessation aid, smokers should be encouraged to use a combination of already approved treatments. Nevertheless, experts suggest that appropriately regulated e-cigarettes may have a role to play in supporting some smokers who have failed cessation treatment, been intolerant to it or have refused to use conventional medication.

Why do adults start smoking?

The risk of becoming a smoker among young people who have never smoked is high: 14% of smokers will be between the ages of 16 and 24, and the three factors to predict this behavior.

images (1)“The beginning of smoking is also occurring among young people, and particularly among those who are impulsive, have poor grades , or who drink alcohol regularly ,” says Jennifer O’Loughlin , a professor of the University of Montreal School of Public Health (ESPUM) and author izzhurnala health adolescents are published in August. O’Loughlin says smoking prevention campaigns should also target young people between the ages of 16 and 24.

A recent phenomenon

Since smoking is reduced markedly in the past three decades, researchers have presented several studies that the tobacco industry is increasing its efforts to reach out to young people.

In the United States, there is a 60 % increase in the number of young people who start smoking after high school.

This trend has prompted O’Loughlin and her team at ESPUM identifies predictors of young people start smoking, which can lead to opportunities for prevention.

They analyzed data from a cohort study «NdIt” (nicotine dependence in adolescents), which began in 1999 in the Greater Montreal Area, in which nearly 1,300 young people aged 12-15 years participated.

In this cohort, fully 75 % had tried smoking. Of these young people, 40 % started smoking before high school, 44 % started smoking during high school, and 17 % started after high school.

Not everyone, however, continued to smoke, but among the “late” smokers, the researchers found that smoking is associated with the beginning of three risk factors: high levels of impulsivity, poor school performance, and higher alcohol consumption.

Explaining the three risk factors

Some smokers showed greater impulsivity end compared to other participants in the study. According to O’Loughlin, it is possible that impulsivity more freely expressed when one becomes an adult, because the parents are no longer there to control. “We can say that the parents of children impulsive exercise more control when they are living with them at home to protect their children from the adoption of behaviors that may lead to smoking, and this protection may wane over time,” she explains.

In addition, school difficulties increase the risk of becoming a smoker, because they are associated with dropping out of school and looking for work in workplaces where smoking rates are higher.

Finally, as young people are likely to frequent places where they can drink alcohol, they are more likely to be influenced by smoking, or at least more easily tempted. “Since alcohol lowers inhibitions and self-control, it is an important risk factor for smoking initiation,” warns O’Loughlin.

On targeted prevention campaigns

Smoking prevention campaigns usually target teens because studies show that people usually start smoking at the age of 14 or 15. This phenomenon is well known, and many prevention programs targeted at adolescents.

“Our research shows that it is also important to address prevention among young people, especially because the tobacco companies’ advertising campaigns of this particular group,” said O’Loughlin.

“This is especially important because, if we can prevent the onset of smoking among young people, the probability that they would never smokers is high, ” she says.

E-cigarettes?

In this day and age, everything seems to be going digital, and that includes smoking. Many smokers are turning to electronic cigarettes, also called e-cigarettes, thinking that they are better off with it than regular cigarettes. The truth is, we do not know what the consequences of electronic cigarettes are on the long term because there is not much scientific evidence, except those of manufacturers have come up with.

electronic-cigarette-185The Philippine Medical Association has called for a ban on the sale of electronic cigarettes to the public until the proper testing of their safety has been done. He noted that the sale of electronic cigarettes are not regulated, making them accessible to children and youth who look up to them as cool devices to be visible. They have contributed to some marketers, as an “alternative lifestyle” and many are made to believe that they are safer and relatively “healthy” than actually smoking.

“We do not know if it can be bad for us, and if they say that it is an alternative lifestyle, the question whether it is right for us to learn a new kind of vice to the public, to ensure that our children and young people,” warned Dr. Ramon Severino of the Philippine Pediatric Society, which is an organization of PMA specialty.

Dr. Saturnino Javier, immediate past president of the Philippine Heart Association, also details the uncertainty and risks of e-cigarette use in his column in Vital Signs, a newspaper for physicians and health care professionals. “It must also contend with the fact that nicotine is also a pair of the lungs,” he wrote. “One of the strongest arguments against the use of the electronic cigarette is that it can undermine prevention and cessation of smoking habits by strengthening the consumption of cigarettes in public places and workplaces,” he added.

Local FDA stand

Sometime ago, our local Food and Drug Administration issued a warning to the public about electronic cigarettes, emphasizing that they are not recommended method of smoking cessation treatment for smokers who want to quit. It also highlighted the potential risk of grave incitement children into learning how to smoke.

Electronic cigarette manufacturers claim that they are not targeting children with their product, but the nicotine cartridges they sell tastes are attractive to children. What child would not be attracted to chocolate, caramel, strawberry and even bubble gum flavors taste? Knowing the adventurous nature of the school and the unregulated nature of electronic cigarettes, we can have disastrous fad in the making, if we allow the electronic cigarette to be approved for sale.

The e-cigs work as a vaporizer since they vaporize a liquid solution into an aerosol mist, which simulates the real thing. It gives one the feeling of virtual smoking. It provides a virtual smoking. Although they do not contain tobacco is small in the device, which heats liquid nicotine, which transforms it into steam, which Smokers inhale and exhale.

Electronic Cigarette manufacturers claim that this nicotine vapor offers much less risk than conventional cigarette smoke. But no one knows for sure, possible side effects of inhaling nicotine vapor, as well as other health risks electronic cigarettes can cause. 

Vaporized solutions

We usually evaporate medicament for pulmonary problems such as asthma and lung inflammation, as it was shown that the vaporized solutions can reach the lung tissue more quickly and efficiently. If the electronic cigarettes have the same mechanism, and then vaporized nicotine to affect adversely the lighter, and we will not be surprised if more recent studies have shown that electronic cigarettes can cause all known complications of smoking in a short period of time.

Quality control in the manufacture of electronic cigarettes is also a big question mark, and it is likely that some manufacturers cannot adequately disclose all they put in their cartridges for electronic cigarettes, or the actual nicotine levels may be higher than what is listed on the label of the cartridge.

This may be the cause of satisfied electronic cigarette users swear by the high heavens about how electronic cigarettes have weaned them from smoking tobacco. Most likely, they do not realize that they get a higher dose of nicotine. They are out of the frying pan and put the fire directly.

Johnny Depp might have looked cool, though he fidgeted with his electronic cigarette in the movie “The Tourist” and Katherine Heigl of “Grey’s Anatomy” might sound like a health expert, as she explained how electronic cigarettes work when she guested in the David Letterman show. But not even a ton of celebrities can ever cover up the unknown danger that lurks behind the use of electronic cigarettes.




Tobacco firms held a quiet meeting with senior EU officials

Tobacco lobbyists and senior European officials Commission held several meetings quiet for at least the past two years, according to the Brussels-based pro-transparency group Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO).
Among them there are people out-of-office commission Chief Jose Manuel Barroso, its General Secretariat and others in the administration of the Commission on Health and Consumer Affairs (DG Sanco).

cigarettes304Fraud EU Olaf says undisclosed meeting with the tobacco industry, are a direct violation of the articles of the Framework Convention of the World Health Organization’s Tobacco Control.
Olaf chief Giovanni Kessler reportedly told Euro-MPs at a private meeting in October that the Convention was mentioned in John Dalli, which is focused around his contacts with Swedish Match, the company that makes the kind of mouth tobacco called snus.
Commission guidelines echo the WHO.

Its internal rules stipulate that officials “have to interact with the tobacco industry only when and to the extent strictly necessary” and must “ensure that such interaction is transparent.”
Dally meeting with a young lawyer in his office, in the company of Silvio Zammit, a Maltese businessman and mayor of the small, to discuss the draft of the EU tobacco and chewing is an “informal contacts with several tobacco companies,” said the spokesman of the commission.
However, the Director General of excavated at least five different meetings, as well as outside of official channels between tobacco lobbyists and other senior officials of the EU Commission.
One of the meetings held with the Swedish Match and people within their own Barroso General Secretariat in September, a month before Dally lost his job.

Transparency of NGOs said Swedish Match has met with officials of the General Secretariat of William and Jean Sleath Ferriere, and Antti Maunu of DG Sanco to explain his views “about the current situation with regard to chewing and what we see as a logical step to take in the future, which control for all smoke-free tobacco products in the EU. ”
In June, Clara Martínez Alberola’s office Barroso met with Spyros Pappas (unregistered lawyer / lobbyist firm of Pappas & Associates) and Patrick Hildingson Brussels European Smokeless Tobacco Council.

In December 2011, tobacco lobbyists from the German-based Bundesverband der Zigarrenindustrie and Dutch-based European Association of cigars Barroso met with Cabinet officials Guillaume Morel and Klaus Henning.
Another meeting was held in June 2010 between Philip Morris International and member of the Secretariat Barroso John Watson.
Watson wrote in a letter at the time, Philip Morris gave him some documents that he will transfer to colleagues. He then says Philip Morris would “write to the SD [CEO] trade and Sanco”.
Philip Morris also met with Watson and Marianne Klingbeil, another official of the General Secretariat, in May 2010 at a conference in London.
“Meetings Dalli tobacco lobbyists in his office in Malta were not clear, but it may be a reason for the resignation Dalli? Does the Commission have a rigorous approach around contacts with tobacco lobbyists, as prescribed in the rules of the WHO? Answer, apparently, is not to be” , said the CEO.

The Commission, for its part, confirms the above meeting took place, but said that they were not carried out behind closed doors.
“No rules have been broken. EU rules in place for contacts with the parties concerned have been met. These are compatible with the WHO recommendations,” said commission spokeswoman Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen in an email to EUobserver.
She told the Commission that site uncovered documents relating to the proceedings after the freedom of information, including the CEO.
But the CEO, who had learned about some of the meetings of the EU’s freedom of information law, said watchdogs should have led the Commission to disclose these meetings, make a formal request for documents.

“If you have to ask for the documents – and you’re lucky if you get them – that is not the type of transparency in accordance with the WHO rules,” CEO Olivier Hoedeman told this website.
Hoedeman noted that DG Sanco publishes most of the meeting minutes and the tobacco industry on the site.
“Everyone else should do the same,” he added.

Chewing on a limited tobacco policy

The Student Government Association of the University of Memphis is trying to give the community the right to chew – tobacco, that is.

On November 8, the SGA passed a resolution that would change the current limited on-campus tobacco use policy “on-campus smoking ban,” allowing smokeless tobacco to be used on campus.

Addison Piggott, SGA senator who sponsored the resolution, said that students should be able to use tobacco anywhere on the street, because there are no harmful effects of secondhand smoking.

Piggott identified smokeless tobacco as a “dip, snuff, [or] any form of chewing tobacco, which are not connected with the fire or smoke.”

Electronic cigarettes are not included in this resolution because they are “technically smoking products”, Piggott said, but if he can determine that they do not have the harmful effects of passive, it is not you a bill allowing them also.

While SGA voted for approval of the resolution for the consideration of administrative, Maria Alam, assistant vice president and chief human resources officer, said students initially led ban on tobacco account administration through SGA.

“The initiative to eliminate tobacco was first introduced in 2010, students in the Student Government Association,” she said. “Based on the feedback received from the students and the general university community, the tobacco-free initiative was changed to a limited tobacco initiative.”

Piggott said, setting the designated areas of tobacco, tobacco smoke contains, but there is no need to include smokeless tobacco, because there are no negative consequences for the user.

“Tobacco, which produces smoke, is harmful, and we protect the rights of non-smoking,” he said. “We decided to smoking areas, so that people who want to smoke can still do it, and those who can not find their way around it, so we do not violate the rights of people anyway.”

But Alam said that the purpose of the limited use of tobacco policy is “to promote a healthy lifestyle through a healthy environment for students, staff and visitors,” not only to eliminate tobacco smoke.

At the meeting, SGA senate, senator spoke about the filth of “spitting” of smokeless tobacco. Piggott said that smokeless tobacco is biodegradable and does not stain the concrete.

Mason Lin, a sophomore finance major and Senator College of Arts and Sciences, voted for approval of the resolution.

“I think that people can do whatever they want to do as long as it does not hurt other people,” he s

aid.

Alam said that any resolution will be proposed by Vice President of Student Affairs Rosie Bingham.

The resolution does not take effect until the administration approves it. Piggott said he plans to speak with SGA President Russell Born and U of M Police Services on how to get the University to allow students to start using smokeless tobacco throughout campus.

“It’s a matter of rights and freedoms,” he said.

The proposal eventually devastate Port Tobacco

No one will live in the historic district of Port Tobacco in the preservation plan proposed Charles County government and employees of a private consultant, speakers told the county commissioners Tuesday.

Some of the city at least 15 people, as an idea, and others resist, they said, but no one will be forced to implement this plan.

Commission members unanimously approved a plan allowing employees to form a committee, and to consider the possibility of buying land. There is no clear timetable for implementation.

Port Tobacco, built on the site of a former Indian village, was the district from 1727 to 1895, said consultant Stuart Sirota. Residents have created a museum in 1948, but deserted village is poor as a tourist attraction, because it “is not recognized as a village. People who come looking for it is the idea that there must be something else out there,” said Sirota.

Historically, the “not a village green, in fact, it was mostly dirt,” and it was used as a roadway, said Sirota. “We feel very strongly that there is a very urgent to do so central to the civil, which is really can turn into a really favorite place where people could come for all sorts of events, markets, even weddings, “said Sirota.

Realizing this vision requires the county to buy private land in the historic district, which Kathy Thompson, county community planning program manager, said to be less than 20 acres.

The purchase price is not known.

“Do you have any towing, people want or do not want to sell their land or transfer their land?”

“I think that by going through this process, there are a lot of ideas on how to move forward.’s why we rely so much on the consensus approach,” said Thompson.

Some members of the families of the remaining four villages – Barbours, Wades, Volmans and Jamiesons – do not want to see their ancestral desert town, Thompson said.

“We had a lot of discussion about the proper use for homes. They were residents for most of its history. Certainly, over the past 230 years, families have been raised there. This is a great community to raise a family. There honest debate about whether what is the best use or civil use is most appropriate. I think for families who have children under there, it’s hard to think of that change, and the family will no longer be there, ” Thompson said.

Jerry Volman said he wants to see the city preserved and is open to selling the family land in the county. But first he wanted to know what would be done in neighboring Stagg Hall, home of the colonial era, the planners haven’t specified.

“Basically, I’m trying to sell your home. This is an old and big for one person. None of my children want to move here. If my house is part of the plan, that’s fine as long as he does what the plan says,” to save the city.

A few decades ago, people talked about the transformation of Port Tobacco in another Colonial Williamsburg. But money does not exist, said Sheila Smith, a member of the Society for the restoration of Tobacco Port.

“If you do not have the Rockefeller behind you, it will be difficult to return,” said Smith.

Look before you light up

Come August 9 and all tobacco products in the UAE will hold the powerful graphic and written warnings in English and Arabic, which would cover half of the package.
A smoking is the heart, burning fingers, and a snake coiled around a hookah pipe consists of five scheduled to be used on a rotating basis in an attempt to keep smokers.

In a circular issued recently, all tobacco producers, traders and retailers in the UAE, the Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology, appealed to companies to dispose of their existing stock by the end of 2012. Any violation of the national anti-smoking law that a warning is now required, will take the penalties, which will be announced shortly.
The warnings about the health risks associated with tobacco use, will be binding on all packs of cigarettes and tobacco products across the GCC, in accordance with the unified approach of the state to regulate tobacco.

Officials from the UAE Ministry of Health said that years of hard work went into the implementation of these warnings and what they hope these warnings will have the same effect here as in the countries where they have been implemented.
“Any cigarettes or tobacco, the party entering the UAE on August 9, will require a mandatory warning,” said Dr. Al-Wedad Maidoor, head of the National Committee for Tobacco Control in the Ministry.
Dr Wedad, a well-known title of anti-smoking campaign in the UAE, said graphic warnings was the best way for people, especially youth, to learn the reality of the product. “We’re trying to tell all who live here, and even those who visit the UAE is serious about this issue and their health,” she added.

According to the World Health Organization, the photos convey clear and instant messages, even those who can not read. Although people believe that tobacco is harmful, they often do not know how tobacco actually affects them. Graphic warnings on tobacco products are also useful in reducing the attractiveness of tobacco packages.
Currently, a total of 23 countries are illustrated health warnings with messages reaching more than 700 million people. In the Eastern Mediterranean Region, Egypt, Jordan, the Islamic Republic of Iran and Djibouti illustrated the issue of health warnings on packets of tobacco products.

“Tobacco companies spend millions of dollars to tobacco products attractive. They use packaging as an important tool for attracting new customers, while distracting them from the harsh reality of how tobacco destroys health,” said Dr Wedad.
The manufacturer says that adding pictures will mean cost increases of at least 20 percent. “We need a special color printers and scanning facilities,” said a spokesman for the production of Fujairah company brand is available locally and for export.
According to the specification, warnings, and photos will be printed on a white background and will cover 50 percent of the package. Warnings will also be required for different tobacco products, such as water pipes, snuff and chewing tobacco, cigars and cigarillos.

At the same time, research conducted by the Abu Dhabi Health and Johns Hopkins University in 2009 found that there is a very high level of tobacco consumption in the UAE. The study was done to assess the impact of graphic warnings to the public. All respondents believed that people smoke because of one or more of the following reasons: communication, entertainment with friends, free from stress provoking thoughts, mood improvement, and habit after eating, before bed and use the “Madawaska” small pipe to relax.

Smokeless tobacco products resemble candy

The smoke had a dead giveaway.
A decade ago, tobacco, can hardly be concealed. The sight and smell of cigarettes or cigars have made it clear when someone is lighting.
But all this is changing, and the team Prevention Coalition leaders Lincoln, North Smithfield and Woonsocket are trying to spread the word.

With smoking banned in public in most areas, and generally frowned upon, is the realization leaders said that the tobacco industry had to think more creatively.
“Cigarette Use Down, but tobacco use is the way,” said Pamela Shayer, coordinator of the Lincoln and North Smithfield Prevention Coalition. “I think the kids know smoking is bad, but I do not think they know it’s bad. It is positioned as a replacement.”
Shayer was joined by Woonsocket Prevention Coalition Executive Director Lisa Carcifero, Woonsocket Prevention Coalition Grant Coordinator, Carol Fisk, and Rhode Island Tobacco Control Network Director Lisa Carnevale for a community meeting for new products.
It was March 27 at Landmark Medical Center in Woonsocket, and was attended by about 25 parents.

Managers explained that tobacco can now come in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors and flavors.
Ariva is available in Woonsocket, Carcifero said. It is a product that resembles a Tic Tac mint, but instead delivers 1.5 milligrams of nicotine per tablet. Products like snus mimic snuff by sitting in the user’s lip, but they come in dissolvable tea bag-like pouches, so no spitting is required.
Soluble band, similar to the Listerine mint strips of breath, sit on the user’s language for a few minutes to allow them to ingest 0.6 milligrams of nicotine.
Or is there nicotine water, where an 8-ounce glass can be equivalent to two cigarettes.
There is little cigarillos and cigars, which bypass the $ 3.46 tobacco tax state, the second largest in the country after New York, by weighing milligrams more than the cigarette, which is defined as less than 3 pounds per thousand.
A cigar for more than 3 pounds per thousand, so even though to look like cigarettes, little cigars and cigarillos can weigh a little more and avoid taxes.

“There’s tobacco products for all now,” Shayer said, explaining that while some products, such as tape or water, not to hit Rhode Island, however, they are on the market in other parts of the country.
Shayer explained that the failure of the tax also allows products to have a coupon or buy one, get one free shares, as well as any other non-tobacco products in stores.
Products make it easier for smokers to fix the world “no smoking” signs, but comfort is also provided to students in schools that may use tobacco products, perhaps without even knowing about it.

Shayer pointed to a picture of Tic Tac look at each other, and said that her kindergarten-age son, “of course, takes one of them,” if offered by a classmate.
“Many kids think it’s safer because there is no smoke,” Shayer said: “But there are carcinogens that can lead to oral cancer.”
Carcifero said treatment products such as candies and swallowing too much tobacco can lead to a medical emergency.
“It’s terrible – it falls into the hands of small children,” she said. “You lock the medication, but I do not think to lock up tobacco.

They can also sit on the shelf in front of the cashier at the store, even at eye level next to the candy and chewing gum. While children under the age of 18 still can not buy tobacco prevention coalition leaders say they are the target audience.
“Marketing is in full swing,” Shayer said, explaining that the tobacco companies are using Facebook, YouTube, and web banner ads, in addition to traditional advertising magazine, many times parodying the font or the appearance of familiar film.
Carnevale said the Rhode Island Tobacco Control Network, which unites 50 organizations around the state, working to prevent and stop in the state.
She said that the bill is pending in the Statehouse tax increase on cigarettes by 90 cents to the state tax, even New York.

“Part of containment began limiting access,” said the carnival. “If you can do cigarettes cost a lot of money, people will smoke.”
She said the organization supported the proposed four percent Governor Lincoln Chafee on the increase, but she said she would need to increase taxes by 60 cents to the impact on public health.
This extra money can go to the funded program of prevention, she said.

Carnevale explained that while the Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that Rhode Island is $ 15.1 million in programs on tobacco control, the state only about $ 300,000, a 50-percent reduction last year.
Another bill under consideration that calls for an amount to be raised to $ 3.1 million, which would be a historical maximum in the state, and then $ 500,000 each year until the amount recommended by CDC is performed.
Carnevale said awareness is key to keeping kids from tobacco.

“It’s a completely different world,” she says about her education of tobacco growing. “There was smoke you could see, taste and smell. You’ve got a lot.”
Carcifero said that if children do not use tobacco products for 18 years, 90 percent never will.
For parents of new products are a priority, Shayer said, as many may not know to look out for products that look like candy.
“This is a continuing education, even for us,” said Shayer. “They are constantly releasing new products. We can only do so much.”

Carcifero said they encourage people to express concerns of local leaders and legislators.
“We empower people to make changes to help our children”, Carcifero said.
Shayer said that parents and children should be in constant communication with each other on these topics, as well as general health and wellness. Both should feel safe to ask questions, she said.
She said that while children may have to deal with peer pressure at school, parents were have a strong influence, so they should be a role model.
“Children have dreams at such a young age, but there are consequences for everything,” she said. “If you want to have a great life, of course, is not the way.”

Is tobacco less e-cigarettes less harmful?

Smoking actually is a socially acceptable form of substance abuse that causes more deaths than more vilified ones like alcohol, cocaine, crystal meth and other recreational drugs. Cigarettes contain over a dozen carcinogens and 1 out of every 3 cancer-related deaths is caused due to use of tobacco products.

Smokers even whilst accepting the hazardous effects of smoking simply don’t have the will power or gumption to quit. There are various smoking cessation methods that help smokers quit including nicotine patches, gums and e-cigarettes where the underlying principle is to give addicts the nicotine “kick” without the harmful carcinogens found in tobacco. The most popular one is the electronic cigarette or the E-cig.

What’s an e-cig?

An electronic cigarette is a device that mimics the entire smoking process by producing a mist which has the same sensation (sometimes the same flavor too) of smoking. The concept of an electronic cigarette has been around since the 60s but tobacco consumption wasn’t really considered hazardous back then and it took until 2003 for the first smokeless e-cigarette to hit the market.

Electronic Cigarettes manufacturers claim that they are like real cigarettes except that there are no hazardous health implications because there is no combustion, no tobacco and no smoking. Also since there is no passive smoking, second hand smoke and pollution due to butt litter or smoke.

What’s in an e-cig?

The e-cigarette basically consists of three parts: Cartridge, Atomizer and Power supply

The cartridge’s a mouthpiece (like a cigarette’s butt) that usually holds the liquid that is to be vaporized. The atomizer serves as a heating element and vaporizes the liquid and each of them contains a power supply like a chargeable plug, USB drive or batteries.

An e-cigarette produces nicotine infused vapor and though it looks like smoke is actually atomized air. Some e-cigs replace this nicotine vapor with other flavors like vanilla, chocolate, etc. though certain anti-smoking groups feel this could encourage minors to smoke. As a smoking cessation tool some manufactures even look to replicate the flavor of particular brands like Matlboro online, camel cigaretes, pall-mall cigarettes etc.

Are they really less harmful?

E-cigs are primary used as a smoking replacement or a smoking cessation device to help smokers quit though the lack of studies and its relative novelty make it hard to judge its health effects. According to United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), known carcinogens were detected into the nicotine-cartridges and there were also concerns it could be marketed to younger people. However FDA methods have been derided in various journals for lack of evidence and which claimed that the nicotine content was a lot lower than actual cigarettes as were the health hazards.

The World Health Organization (WHO) on the other hand have voiced their opinion that though e-cigs are usually marketed as devices for nicotine replacement therapy there were no studies to back up that claim and has refused to endorse the device.

Research carried out at the University of East London suggests that nicotine content doesn’t seem to be of central importance but other smoking related mannerisms like taste, vapour resembling smoke and hand movements helps reduce discomfort related with tobacco abstinence in the short term.

In an online survey conducted by the University of Alberta, School of Public Health in 2009 among 303 smokers, it was found that e-cigarette substitution for tobacco cigarettes resulted in reduced health problems, the kind that usually ails smokers (less cough, improved ability to exercise, -improved sense of taste and smell).

Conclusion

 Although there isn’t conclusive evidence to suggest that e-cigs are completely harmless at least all the research studies suggest that they and are definitely less harmful than traditional cigarettes. They also provide smokers with the means to quit by mimicking the mannerisms of long time users right from the hand movements, inhaling and the atomized vapor that imitates smoke.

 

A tobacco company is not it?

Cigarette companies – and boy, it’s hard to talk about it – might be right.

 Do not “right” in the sense we usually think of the word. Death, pain and suffering that cigarettes have brought millions of families are not in serious dispute.But in court right now, it begins to look as if those terrible, graphic picture warnings, which should have been plastered across a pack of cigarettes, can not happen in the end.You know the picture – there was ample advertising in advance of them.

Photographs of patients with lung, the picture tracheotomy hole in the throat of man, an illustration of man with his bare chest surgically sewn up, a picture of tooth decay. Full-color illustrations have been entrusted by the Government to cover the entire upper half of the front and back of each pack of cigarettes.

They were intended to be so ugly and so visually inevitable that potential customers turn away.But five tobacco manufacturers claim in federal court that ordered the government violates the First Amendment. Tobacco companies say that freedom of speech should not be violated – and that for the government to say that private companies, big, ugly, dominant figures, they must print on their packages attack on basic American principles.

The government takes power to do so from a family of tobacco use prevention and the law of 2009, which was passed by Congress. R.J. Reynolds Company, manufacturer of Camel, Kool, Winston Salem cigarettes, said the government ordered the image “is intended to induce disgust, revulsion and disgust.”

U.S. District Judge Richard Leon, it seems, says cigarette manufacturers have a strong case. In November last year, he issued a temporary injunction that blocked the forced publication of images. At a hearing this month, he said: “There is nothing in the record shows that Congress has given a clear and thoughtful analysis of the first consequences of this change.” He promised that the final decision in the near future.

Regardless of how many of us may not like what cigarettes have done to the health of the nation, the first argument of the amendment is a compelling one. The government runs the risk of setting a precedent of anxiety when, regardless of the laudable intention, he says, who – person or company – that she should say and show things that are aggressively opposed to the person or company’s own interests. What can we say about the text only warning signs that appeared on packs of cigarettes for decades? Tobacco companies have never liked nor, of course. But the argument in court that there is a legal distinction between the labels requires that the state of facts and illustrations requiring that serve to actively oppose the purchase of the product. The Government believes that health issues are of paramount importance, tobacco companies argue that nothing outweighs the freedom of speech.

Manufacturers of tobacco products, as we all know, has long done enough to use their own freedom of speech. Some of the old cigarette advertising, when you come at them now, it’s just amazing.

I recently saw a November 1936 national magazine advertising Camels, who are cheerful, colorfully illustrated, of course, a course of instruction for five cigarette smoking at the table during Thanksgiving dinner in order to achieve “a peaceful feeling that comes from a good digestion and smoking Camels.”

Among the tips: Start with tomato soup and. “Camel Smokes after soup” Before asking for the second portion of the turkey, “the other smoking a camel. Camels ease the tension.” After the salad, of course, one camel, which “clears the sky and sets the stage for dessert?» It’s going on.

In 1954, when health concerns about cigarettes are gaining momentum, the old brand of gold took a double spread of the national magazine ad that all but scoffed at by medical evidence. “America, we love you!” the ad began. “Once again thank you for your confidence in cigarette tobacco made people … no healers … We promise! Old Gold will continue to treat only one thing: the best tobacco in the world … Old Gold smoke for pleasure, not treatment. ”

If in 2012, cigarettes new prescription drugs, or new over-the-counter medications, or a new starter, and the government knew that he now knows about the health consequences of such a product would never be approved for use in the home. It would have been pulled from the shelves immediately.

But cigarettes are not a new product. They have a history of sold legally. Thus, the government says the producers that they need to perform these illustrations, to persuade people away.
Will it be a leak – the government will get its way?

It has long been an axiom that freedom of expression stops at the right to shout “Fire!” But it is not a cigarette marketers have an unlimited right to enthusiastically shouting “Smoke” in a crowded nation?

You can almost bet that nobody is going to end up before the U.S. Supreme Court.

 

Lawyers warn of smokeless tobacco

Cases of teens caught with tobacco in schools can be compared to last year, but the anti-drug officials say chewing and other alternatives, smoking may help them avoid detection.

Jennifer Ball, substance abuse prevention educator for the school district, told you are no longer children and adolescents, only cigarettes and tobacco spit to choose from. Now the products look like stripes gum, mints, tea bags, and other common elements that can be slipped into the upper or lower lip and go unnoticed. Many mints or fruit, and even smell like candy wrap, Ball said. “Especially in the school system, if you do not know the tobacco companies’ new marketing tools, teachers can easily take these items for packing chewing gum or candy,” Ball said. “They do come in small cans that look like Altoid cans. All chewing tobacco is no longer the little round circle of containers that are so obvious. They can be disguised so well.”

This concern, the ball is said, because children and teenagers are increasingly using the products and are under the impression that they are safer than cigarettes.

According to a press release from Hernando County Health Department, 10.9 percent of students in Hernando County school there were a smokeless tobacco in 2010 – 2.6 percent more than in 2006.

For comparison, the statewide prevalence of smokeless tobacco was 6.4 percent among high school students in 2011.

Health officials and worry, because the fall and other chewing tobacco, consume three to four times the amount of nicotine compared to cigarettes.

Using chewing tobacco also gives users the risk of oral cancers, and cancers of the esophagus, larynx, stomach, pancreas, and pharynx.

“Part of the problem lies in the fact that we beat the children about the dangers of smoking and all that they have heard, is lung cancer, lung cancer, lung cancer,” Ball said. “We have always been focused on smoking, and very little was discussed about oral cancer and cancer of the stomach.”

According to the Department of Health, the new products that teens have access to include:
• Snus (pronounced “snooze”), a new type of smokeless tobacco, which is a small bag, a bag containing tobacco that users place between the gum and upper lip. Snus requires no spitting, so it can be easily hidden. Of Orbs (soluble granules tobacco), sticks and strips that resemble chewing gum, candy and breath strips.

Other forms include:of the spit, or chewing tobacco.

Loose-leaf for: Free form small packed bars.

Forks of the: which consist of small, oblong blocks of semi-soft chewing tobacco?

of the Nasal snuff: the powder, which is sniffed into the nostrils.

Meanwhile, Ann-Gayl Ellis, public information officer of the Department of Health said that the February 19-25 a week to the Chu – a campaign aimed at preventing and reducing the use of smokeless tobacco.

 

 

Tomatoes and wine make cigarettes less toxic

Researchers have shown that lycopene and grape seed extract literally tucked into a conventional cigarette filter drastically reduces the amount of carcinogens that pass through.

Although the stresses that denial is the best way to combat health problems for smokers, Cornell researchers have found a way to make cigarettes less toxic.

Researchers from the lab of Jack H. Fried, Frank and Robert Laughlin Professor of Physical Chemistry, showed that lycopene and grape seed extract is literally tucked into a conventional cigarette filter dramatically reduces the amount of carcinogens that pass through.
Their study is published in the January 2 issue of the Journal of Visualized Experiments (Jupiter).

«The impact of this technology can help reduce the harmful effects of tobacco smoke,” said Boris Dzikovski, scientific papers and co-author.
The Cornell researchers have changed the filters of normal cigarettes, placing a mixture of grape seed and lycopene treated with activated charcoal in the middle. Their experiments focused on gas phase free radicals, in contrast to other harmful components such as particulate matter, or tar contained in cigarettes.

A laboratory machine “smoked” the altered cigarettes, along with conventional ones. The smoke passes through the spin-capture solution, and electron spin resonance spectroscopy (EPR) was used to record the spectra of trapped radicals in the smoke samples.

ESR showed that grape seed and Lycopene is removed, or blown up to 90 percent of free radicals that would otherwise have passed through the filter. The researchers note that these agents purification could be obtained in large quantities, such as by-product of the tomato or the wine industry.
Scientists have tried to make safer cigarettes in the past. Hemoglobin that carries oxygen in red blood cells, and activated charcoal has been shown to decrease free radicals in the smoke to 90 percent, but because of the cost, the combination was not represented on the market.

The health hazards associated with free radicals in cigarette compounded by the fact that cigarette smoke is inhaled in high concentrations, Dzikovski added. Inhalation of any smoke, such as passive smoking, pollution, automotive and industrial waste has several potentially dangerous effects.

“The number and composition of the radicals from various sources may be quite different, and the spin-capture technique ESR is in a unique position to analyze and quantify them,” he said.

The study will be the 1500 th article in Jupiter, only peer-reviewed, PubMed indexed video magazine.

Tobacco investments

THE Gillard government faces pressure to halt its multi-billion dollar fund to invest in the future of the tobacco industry and the companies that make nuclear weapons.

The Future Fund, which was established by the former Howard government to help meet long-term value of pension liabilities of the public sector, showed that last year she spent $ 147 million in shares of producers of cigarettes.
The Greens, on whom the government depends to pass legislation in the Senate, will be increased pressure on the fund in a ditch a big stake in tobacco products, and some $ 179 million stake in a company involved in manufacturing nuclear weapons.
When the Senate resumes sitting next month after the summer break, the Greens will push for rules forcing the fund to deprive its ”unethical” holdings.

Greens Senator Richard Di Natale, who introduced a bill on the subject at the end of last year, said it was a ”no brainier” for the Future Fund to offload its tobacco and nuclear stockpiles.
Senator Di Natale said it was entirely inconsistent for the government to fight big tobacco with ”courageous” plain packaging laws, and ”then on the other hand to be investing $147 million in large multinationals who make the stuff”.
The plain-packaging laws were passed at the end of last year, and Philip Morris has filed a lawsuit saying the restrictions damage to his property.
While the government has refused to say that the fund for investment, Senator Di Natale said the sale of shares will have a negligible impact on returns $ 73 billion fund.

”It would be very easy to take off those shares without any impact on the bottom line, and I think it would be a responsible thing for the government
to do.”’

Previously, the fund has defended its investments in the companies on the grounds that they are not involved in illegal activities. The government has refused to intervene to interfere with his independent investment decisions.
However; there are overseas precedents for governments intervening in how public funds are invested. In October, the Canadian state of Alberta sold $US17.5 million worth of tobacco stocks because it was suing tobacco companies for health costs caused by smoking.
National Welfare Fund of Norway sold its investments in tobacco in 2010, and guidelines for the prevention of investing in companies that damage the environment.

The Future Fund last year sold its stake in companies that make cluster bombs and mines – including the defense giant Lockheed Martin – to the new treaty came into force on a bomb.
When Future Fund general manager Mark Burgess was asked about tobacco and nuclear investments in October, he said it was updating its environmental, social and governance policies.

It is understood some government MPs are sympathetic to the Greens’ argument, but Finance Minister Penny Wong has stressed the need for the fund to make arm’s length investment decisions.
The fund’s record on social and environment issues have been thoroughly tested last year when evidence emerged that its board never discussed climate change.

Smokeless Growth at Altria

After the report of Food and Drug Administration there was unproved that smokeless tobacco is not so harmful as cigarette are. This fact was derogatory for Altria Group because the smokeless tobaccois the sole kind that has been growing for the company in the past 12-15 months. The competes with Reynolds American and Lorillard, two of its biggest competitors in the U.S.

Tobacco Companies Claim Otherwise

Tobacco companies declared that smokeless products a less harmful than cigarettes since they do not concerned in their consistency that is full of carcinogens and many other bad chemicals.
Reynold American tried to get some warning pictures for smokeless tobacco, to change it into “No tobacco product is safe, but this product presents substantially lower risks to health than cigarettes.”

Shortly after, the warning reads “This product is not a safe alternative to cigarettes.” The report advises fda to endorse third party bodies which can independently research on the effects of smokeless tobacco products.

So Far So Good

The sales of smokeless tobacco grew with 14 percent in 2010 and grew with 9 percent in 2011 and are expected to grow with 9 percent this year, as this product is smoke free, their usage isn’t prohibited in public places and many others where smoking of cigarette is banned. These are also a hit with the retailers as they enjoy margins as high as 30 percent.

Altria operates in the smokeless tobacco segment through Red Seal, Copenhagen and Skoal.
As per our estimates, smokeless tobacco products constitute 15 percent of Altria’s stock price while cigarettes constitute 73 percent. This difference is a major one, we can understand fro this that cigarettes are more accepted and more employed by people.

Cigarette consumption is on a decline in the U.S. as tobacco companies are left with no option but to pass on the tax increases to consumers.
Smokeless tobacco products are the segment that offers a significant growth potential for Altria. We expect the size of smokeless products to grow at an annual rate of 7 percent over the next few years.

Some source show that cigarette consumption is in fall in the USA, and tobacco companies found a way out this situation, to increase taxes to consumers which can further complicate the situation. Smokeless tobacco products are the source that offers an important potential growth for Altria. We expect the size in percents of smokeless products will grow at an annual rate of 7 or more percent over the next few years.

100 days until end of tobacco displays

With just 100 days to go before tobacco displays in supermarkets must be removed, retailers are today reminded that they need to start getting their shops in order.

From 6 April 2012, large shops will no longer be able to display tobacco products to the public except on occasions for instance when staff are serving customers or when they are carrying out stock control or cleaning.

Customers will still be able to buy cigarettes in the usual way but the Government is ending tobacco displays to protect young people who are often the target of tobacco promotion. Ending open cigarette displays will help people trying to quit smoking and help to change attitudes and social norms around smoking.

Chief Medical Officer, Professor Dame Sally Davies said:

“Smoking kills over 80,000 people in England each year — making it one of the biggest preventable causes of premature death.”

“We cannot ignore the fact that young people are recruited into smoking by tobacco promotion. Two thirds of smokers say they were already regular smokers before they turned 18. More than 300,000 children under 16 try smoking each year. Ending tobacco displays in shops will protect young people from unsolicited promotions, helping them resist the temptation to start smoking. It will also help and support adults who are trying to quit.”

Jean King, Cancer Research UK’s Director of Tobacco Control, said:

“Cancer Research UK welcomes this important first step towards removing tobacco displays from shops. Selling cigarettes alongside sweets and crisps makes them seem like a normal, everyday product rather than a deadly and addictive drug. It’s vital that everything is done to put tobacco out of sight and out of mind to protect future generations of children. Half of all long-term smokers will die from a tobacco related disease, and most become addicted as teenagers. Lung cancer remains the most common cancer in the UK with more than eight out of 10 cases caused by smoking.”

Deborah Arnott, Chief Executive of ASH (Action on Smoking and Health) said:

“For far too long, large, colourful tobacco displays right by the sweets in shops have promoted cigarettes to children and made smoking seem part of everyday life. Removing these displays is a critical element of the Government’s comprehensive strategy to protect children from the harm caused by tobacco. Retailers have nothing to fear, the evidence from Ireland when the legislation was implemented there was that committed smokers still knew where to buy cigarettes and didn’t need to see the displays to decide what they wanted to buy.”

mediacentre.dh.gov.uk

The Myth of the Dying Tobacco Industry

Despite the passage of smoking laws, anti-smoking campaigns and an increased overall awareness of the danger of smoking, the tobacco industry is still making strong profits.

Stanford’s Robert Proctor recently released his 750 study Golden Holocaust: Origins of the Cigarette Catastrophe and the Case for Abolition. Publishing the book personally cost Proctor $50,000 in legal fees to defend himself against the industry, which subpoenaed his email and unpublished manuscript

So what was the tobacco industry trying so hard to hide?

Besides some horrid health-related facts (“If everyone stopped smoking today, there would still be millions of deaths a year for decades to come.”) Proctors’ book accounts for how tobacco makers have repeatedly lied to Congress and the public.

Dispelling Myths

Proctor says six trillion cigarettes are smoked every year. “That’s “enough to make a continuous chain from Earth to the sun and back, with enough left over for a couple of round trips to Mars.”

But isn’t smoking on the decline? Not so fast. According to Proctor, “we don’t count the people who don’t count. It’s not the educated or the rich who smoke anymore, it’s the poor.” In addition, the rising popularity of hookahs are “just as addictive, and just as deadly.”

Another myth: “The tobacco industry has turned over a new leaf.” False, says Proctor. Cigarettes are made more deadly today than they were 60 years ago, and tobacco companies still target children, just not in ways so obvious as cartoon cigarette-store.biz/online/camel.

Most people begin smoking at the age of 12 or 13, or even younger in some parts of the world, says Proctor. “And how many people know that cigarettes contain radioactive isotopes, or cyanide, or free-basing agents like ammonia, added to juice up the potency of nicotine?”

Industry Growth

Perhaps most interesting is Proctor’s note that global tobacco use would be declining were it not for China, where 40% of the world’s cigarettes are made and smoked.

But that, he believes, will change soon once China’s government realizes the fringe costs – paying for diseases caused by smoking and loss of productivity – outweigh the benefits of tobacco taxes.

Investing Ideas

Despite the rush of negativity towards the tobacco industry the cigarette companies trading on the US stock exchanges have posted positive performance this year – all above 10%.

We list the seven cigarette companies below. Do you think these names have the momentum to continue on an upward trend?

Analyze These Ideas (Tools Will Open In A New Window)

1. Access a thorough description of all companies mentioned
2. Compare analyst ratings for all stocks mentioned below
3. Visualize annual returns for all stocks mentioned

How Much Does Smoking Really Cost?

Smoking does more than hurt your health; it does a number on your wallet, as well. A pack of cigarettes now costs more than $5 on average—with some states tacking on additional taxes that raise the price even more. In New York City, local taxes have pushed the cost of a pack to about $10.

Even if you don’t smoke yourself, cigarettes may affect your finances: Between 1997 and 2001, smoking was responsible for $167 billion in annual health-care costs and lost productivity in the U.S. alone.

Sure, quitting can also be costly, depending on which route you take. But once you kick your daily habit, you will likely find your bank account is healthier too. Cutting out cigarettes—whether you light up once or more than a dozen times a day—can save you hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars each year.

Monetary Costs of Smoking

Many people see the high monetary cost of a smoking habit. In fact, estimates range that smoking costs the average smoker around $1500 a year just for the purchase of cigarettes. But there is much more at stake then just the cost of the actual purchase of the cigarettes. There are also smoking medical costs that many people fail to take into consideration when counting the cost of smoking. For example, a smoker who suffers from poor lung condition and other related problems will gain many healthcare bills that he or she would not have had if it were not for the smoking habit.

But there are several hidden monetary costs to a smoking habit. For example, those who smoke pay more for life insurance and health insurance than those who are non smokers. This is due to the fact that those who smoke are at a higher risk of early death than non smokers, and likely to take on the high health care costs of smoking.

Smoking in your home lowers the potential resale value, because most new home buyers are not interested in purchasing a house that smells like cigarettes. The same is true for your car. This is yet another way that smoking costs money!

Smoking Costs – It’s More Than Just Money

While the costs of smoking hit your budget and wallet hard, there are many other costs of smoking beyond the financial losses that it brings to you and your family. Smoking health costs, the social stigma of being a smoker, and the emotional problems that come with addiction are all the costs you need to consider when thinking about your habit.

What was Showtime smoking?

A recent episode of “Weeds,” a Showtime television series that features a marijuana-selling single mom, raises the question of what would happen if a crooked financial professional managed a federal investigator’s retirement money.

In the show, a hedge fund accountant played by Kevin Nealon gets himself, the hedge fund and the pot-dealing mother off the hook with federal regulators by not-so-delicately reminding Securities and Exchange Commission investigators that their retirement funds are invested in his company’s fund.

“You guys have those federal pension funds tied in with our Mainstay Fund,” the character says. “Five years ago, Uncle Sam bet your retirement plans on our good judgment … if we go down, you go down. … Not only are you going to let the two of us off the hook right here, but you’re going to give your bosses in D.C. a ring to make sure that our firm’s road to success is paved with the fed’s good graces, plenty of deregulation and a laissez-faire sense of letting us do our [damn] jobs.”

The scene casts the SEC investigators as vulnerable twits who decide to ensure that their pensions remain whole by dropping their inquiry.

In reality, the government has structured its defined-contribution plan to make sure that such a scenario remains the stuff of TV scripts.

In fact, government officials hired an outside law firm in the midst of the 2008 financial crisis to review potential risks to assets in the government’s version of a 401(k) plan, its Thrift Savings Plan. The firm concluded that even if there were a failure of Barclays Bank PLC, which then managed most of the investments in the plan, the assets are secured in trusts that can’t be pilfered, said Tom Trabucco, a spokesman for the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, which operates the plan.

That assurance now applies to BlackRock Inc., which became the investment manager after buying Barclays Global Investors from the British investment bank for $13.5 billion in 2009.

Even if BlackRock itself were to go out of business, the plan’s assets are in a “true trust arrangement,” so no creditor of the firm could claim the assets, and the funds could be transferred to another independent fiduciary, Mr. Trabucco said.

By Liz Skinner
lskinner@investmentnews.com

Restaurants fear smoking ban

A proposed ban on smoking in restaurants, bars and cafés has spurred a debate about how the economic consequences will weigh out, as those against the ban caution that bars and restaurants, as well as state revenue, will suffer if fewer people buy cigarettes, while supporters of the ban say the overall improved health of citizens will make up for any losses.

The discussion is not new – every time a country presents a smoking ban, the same facts and figures are raised regarding the potential losses for the hospitality industry and the state, but different analyses, both sponsored and independent, report conflicting results.

At present, an amendment to ban smoking in restaurants, bars and cafés, with a fine for violators, is being pushed by Dr. Boris Šťastný of the Civic Democrats (ODS), who said this autumn he would present a proposal to the Chamber of Deputies with the support of Health Minister Leoš Heger. The ban would build on legislation that took effect in July 2010 requiring restaurants to display on their doors whether they are smoking or nonsmoking establishments, and requires that nonsmoking sections be enclosed.

The Hotels and Restaurants Association of the Czech Republic (AHR ČR) has criticized the proposal, saying that 75 percent of its members already have nonsmoking areas and that the ban would result in a loss of “a considerable part of our guests.” The ban’s most vocal opponent, Teplice Mayor and MP Jaroslav Kubera (ODS), said it would hurt the balance of the economy.

Studies on smoking bans in cafés and restaurants fall on both sides, though many of the studies on bans in U.S. cities found they had negligible effects on bar and restaurant businesses. However, Jonathan Tomlin, now director of Navigant Economics analysis firm, wrote a report about the effect of a smoking ban in India, and found it negatively affected the overall value of the hospitality industry. He later wrote that those results were applicable elsewhere, where he said studies showing nominal impacts were over-simplified.

The current excise tax on cigarettes is 1.12 Kč per individual cigarette, or about 40 Kč per pack. The VAT on cigarettes is 20 percent. Revenue from excise taxes on cigarettes is around 40 billion Kč per year, while the costs of smoking to the state have been estimated at between 60 billion Kč and 100 billion Kč.

Advocates say this difference is proof that savings in social and healthcare costs would outweigh tax losses, while those against the ban criticize such a calculation as an overly simplified approach that doesn’t take into account the impact of reduced smoking on the tobacco industry, like job cuts.

Thinking about the decrease in tobacco use as loss of tax money was “not a good way of looking at it,” according to Libor Dušek, an economics professor at CERGE-EI.

“Reducing smoking does not mean people have less money. … They will spend their money on other items taxed through the VAT. If there is a reduction in smoking, there could be positive consequences for the government due to the reduction in associated treatment costs,” he said. “It’s very naive.”

In Hungary, which is poised to implement a smoking ban in 2012, the Tax and Excise Office released a report saying the ban would reduce state budget revenues 118.6 million euros the first year of implementation, as well as cause a loss in excise taxes revenues from cigarettes and alcohol of 2.2 million euros. The loss of VAT from cigarette sales was expected to be between 18 million and 31 million euros.

The Czech Finance Ministry has not yet done any similar study, according to spokesman Ondřej Jakob, though evaluation of the amendment’s impacts will follow its official proposal.

“I can’t really think of this in fiscal terms, because you could say that the consumption of any poison by people at the age of 60 is what is best for the government,” Dušek said. “But we are not here for government revenues. We pay the government to improve our lives, and it’s a part of the picture, but a small part. Actual health is what’s important.”

By Cat Contiguglia
ccontiguglia@praguepost.com

Japan eyes tobacco tax hike for reconstruction

Japan is considering a hike in its tobacco tax to help fund reconstruction costs, the Yomiuri newspaper said on Thursday, which could be first in a variety of tax increases as the country rebuilds from natural disaster and tries to repair weak public finances.

The hike, which the government hopes to implement as early as the next fiscal year starting April 2012, could bring in as much as 200 billion yen ($2.5 billion) annually, the newspaper said without citing sources.

The Democratic Party-led government agreed last month to double the 5 percent sales tax by mid-decade to pay for social security costs, which are rising by about one trillion yen a year due to an aging society.

Japan’s outstanding debts are about twice the size of its $5 trillion economy, and credit ratings agencies say tax hikes are needed to avoid a sovereign downgrade.

An advisory panel called last month for a temporary hike to either the sales tax, the corporate tax or income taxes to rebuild the northeast coast, which was devastated by a large earthquake and tsunami on March 11.

But embattled Prime Minister Naoto Kan faces a divided parliament where opposition parties can block legislation and it is not clear whether such hikes can be implemented.

The government is leaning toward increasing taxes on cigarettes as that’s likely to draw less objection from the public, the Yomiuri said.

A tobacco tax hike would however be a blow to Japan Tobacco (2914.T) which controls close to two-thirds of the domestic cigarette market. ($1 = 80.930 Japanese Yen)

By Edwina Gibbs

Zenph moving to American Tobacco

DURHAM — The Durham-based music technology company Zenph Sound Innovations Inc. has plans for a new office space in the American Tobacco Campus.

The approximately 11,000-square-foot space, in the campus’s Power Plant building at 320 Blackwell St.,will be Zenph’s new headquarters, according to www.zenph.com.

The space will be outfitted with the “latest in recording and acoustic technology,” according to the company’s website.

The first phase of the construction for the new headquarters, which will cover about 7,000 square feet of the space, is estimated to be $964,667, according to Durham City-County Inspections.

The cost for the second phase of the project, which covers 3,685 square feet of space, was estimated to be at around $547,601.

Roy Brockwell, assistant director of Durham City-County Inspections, said building permits were issued on Sept. 1 to allow construction to begin, but he said recently that no inspections had yet to be completed.

Brockwell said an inspector made a note on Jan. 14 stating that construction was ready to begin at that time.

Company officials from Zenph and from the American Tobacco Campus declined to comment for this article.

Zenph uses a software-based process to analyze audio recordings of a performance — from the notes to the timing and other aspects unique to a performance — and then stores that information in high-resolution, digital files, according to the company website. The company’s technology allows it to create recordings and live “re-performances” of compositions.

BY LAURA OLENIACZ
loleniacz@heraldsun.com; 419-6636

Review Casts More Doubts on a Lung Cancer Study

In medical experiments on human beings, every patient must sign an “informed consent” form acknowledging the risks, and researchers are required to keep track of those statements.

But the doctors who conducted a controversial, widely publicized lung cancer study involving more than 50,000 patients at numerous hospitals were unable to locate 90 percent of the consent forms, according to a confidential review provided to The New York Times.

The finding casts further doubt on a clinical trial that made headlines in 2006 when it concluded that fully 80 percent of lung cancer deaths could be prevented through wide use of CT scans.

That trial, led by Dr. Claudia I. Henschke at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City, drew sharp criticism from skeptics of cancer screening; the criticism intensified when The Times reported in March 2008 that the research was being financed in part by $3.6 million in grants from the parent company of the Liggett Group, a cigarette maker.

The confidential report on patient consent, dated Oct. 7, 2008, recommended that the trial be stopped. But it continues to this day, although not at Weill Cornell.

Several ethicists said the hospital was legally required to disclose the ethical problems documented by the secret review. That has not happened either.

The confidential report was commissioned by Weill Cornell after The Times’s 2008 article and other revelations about the study in the newsletter r The Cancer Letter. The hospital hired four prominent professors from other universities to undertake an independent review of Dr. Henschke’s research, known as the International Early Lung Cancer Action Program, or I-Elcap.

In their report, the reviewers scolded Weill Cornell administrators for failing to supervise the research more closely, “especially knowing that scientific controversy has surrounded I-Elcap almost from its inception.”

One reviewer, Dr. David P. Carbone, a professor of medicine and cancer biology at Vanderbilt, said in an interview that he and the other reviewers never found out “whether these consents were obtained and lost or whether they weren’t obtained at all.”

He said that Dr. Henschke acted with the best of intentions, “but there’s no way for me to justify any of the problems” documented by the group’s review.

Dr. Henschke, who has since left Weill Cornell for Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York, declined to respond to the findings of the 2008 review, saying it was confidential. But in an e-mail, she said the responsibility for keeping track of consent forms lay with all the hospitals where the experiments were done.

“I-Elcap is a non-federally funded academic consortium of independent, autonomous sites that share certain data,” she wrote. “Accountability and responsibility for human protection lie at the local level.”

But Dr. Henschke’s research has been supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health, and federal rules governing research conducted at multiple sites have long required that the coordinating center either collect copies of patient consent forms or ensure that they are being kept appropriately.

“The responsible conduct of a study requires that informed consent documents be kept on file,” said Dr. P. Pearl O’Rourke, director of human research affairs at Partners HealthCare, part of Harvard University. “There should be a system so that every consent form can be found no matter if individuals were enrolled at a single site or multiple sites.”

John D. Rodgers, a spokesman for Weill Cornell, wrote in an e-mail that the medical school followed federal research regulations “and there were no issues regarding the safety of the research subjects.”

Dr. Bruce A. Chabner, director of clinical research at Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center and editor in chief of The Oncologist journal, said he would ask Weill Cornell for an explanation of the problems outlined in the 2008 scientific review, as well as a follow-up to the report. His journal has published research by Dr. Henschke, and “if we find there was no informed consent for those patients, the paper would have to retracted,” he said.

The American Cancer Society helped finance Dr. Henschke’s research, and some of her work was published in cancer journals owned by the society. Dr. Otis W. Brawley, the society’s chief medical officer, said any study underwritten by the organization must conform to federal research rules, including those that require that problems with informed consent be reported to federal science agencies.

He added that the society’s journals might have to correct or retract any study that proved unable to document that patients had given informed consent. “But I don’t want to prejudge the case,” Dr. Brawley said.

In November, a huge federal study found that annual CT scans of current and former heavy smokers reduced their risk of death from lung cancer by 20 percent and, even more surprising, seemed to reduce the risks of death from other causes as well.

Although the scale of the benefit was substantially less than Dr. Henschke claimed her research showed, the federal study was widely interpreted as confirming her longtime contention that CT screening can save lives from lung cancer, which kills more than 150,000 people each year in the United States. Most patients discover their disease too late for treatment, and 85 percent die from it.
By GARDINER HARRIS

Smokeless tobacco sales show no signs of dipping

Dip, rub, moist snuff, spit tobacco, chawburger — dipping tobacco has many names, but it’s always in demand.smokeless tobacco

Second only to cigarettes in tobacco sales, $4.5 billion worth of moist smokeless tobacco was sold in the U.S. in 2009, according to information from the U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co.

The company is the world’s leading producer of smokeless tobacco, making up 55 percent of the market. Its Copenhagen brand is the country’s most popular, accounting for nearly 25 percent of the market. Skoal is a close second, at about 23 percent.

U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co. estimates 2009 dipping tobacco manufacturers’ profits to be $1 billion before taxes. Last year’s figures were not available.

Like many inelastic commodities, smokeless tobacco fared the recession well. Sales volumes grew by 7 percent between 2008 and 2009.

In Killeen, where many civilians and soldiers who can’t smoke at work choose to dip, dipping tobacco sales can make up a large percentage of convenience store sales.

Gray Street’s Bestway Food Store manager Shady Issa said dipping tobacco accounts for 20 percent of his tobacco sales. Total tobacco sales account for at least 50 percent of his total non-gas sales.

Many dip customers come every two days for their $5, 1.2-ounce tin of Copenhagen, Issa said.

Over one year, that’s about $910. A tin-a-day Copenhagen habit costs $1,825 each year, while a tin-a-week habit costs $260.

Dip is cheaper than cigarettes, medically retired Pfc. Richard Slain of Kempner said, but he doesn’t like to think about how much money he’s spent over the years on the product.

The 37-year-old began packing his lip in fourth or fifth grade, he said.

“It’s depressing when you think about it,” he said. “At this point in my life, I could have bought a house by now.”

Fort Hood resident and Army wife Laura Julius said her husband made the switch from smoking to dipping during a deployment, when he couldn’t smoke outside the wire. She estimated that he goes through about two cans a week.

“Forty bucks is a tank of gas, a cheap date night, two bags of dog food, a family trip to the movies, replacement ink for the printer, et cetera,” she said, “so yes, I wish we could use that money in better ways.”

At Mickey’s Convenience Food Store on South W.S. Young Drive, saleswoman Lynette Hootsell said soldiers are big consumers of smokeless tobacco, which comes close to cigarettes in sales.

Military personnel are more than twice as likely as civilians to use smokeless tobacco, according to a 2007 study by Dr. Alan Peterson, a San Antonio-based retired Air Force psychologist who is currently facilitating several post-traumatic stress disorder studies at Fort Hood through the federally-funded research consortium STRONG STAR.

Army personnel are more likely than Air Force personnel to use smokeless tobacco and be heavier users, the study found.

According to information from University of Iowa Health Care, there are an estimated 5 to 10 million smokeless tobacco users in the United States.

BY Colleen Flaherty: colleenf@kdhnews.com, (254) 501-7559

Hookah Use Among San Diego Teens Rivals Cigarette Use

An alternative and harmful form of tobacco use, known as the hookah or water pipe, may be spreading among youth in the United States according to researchers from the University of California, San Diego’s Department of Family and Preventive Medicine and San Diego State University. This trend is emerging even as cigarette smoking among high school students is on the decline nationally.

The team of researchers examined patterns of use, risk perception, and psychosocial risk factors among users, former users, and hookah usenonusers of hookah at three San Diego high schools. The paper, “Determinants of Hookah Use among High School Students,” was published in the April edition of Nicotine and Tobacco Research.

Wael Al-Delaimy, MD, PhD, associate professor and chief of the Division of Global Health in the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine at UCSD School of Medicine is the team’s senior author and a research expert in the field of tobacco control. “Our study suggests that hookah smoking is taking hold in some high school-aged students at a rate higher than previously reported, which is rather alarming as an emerging public health problem,” said Al-Delaimy. “Our data show that inaccurate perception about hookah harmfulness, its social acceptability, and presence of hookah lounges in residential areas, is driving the higher use among the teens in our study.”

More than a quarter of the surveyed students (26.1 percent) reported they have tried hookah, and 10.9percent smoked hookah in the past month, which is comparable to the percentage of high school students in this study population who smoked cigarettes in the past month (11 percent). Furthermore, close to one third of hookah users have no intention of quitting this habit.

“Understanding the hookah habits of teens is important because a person’s tobacco use pattern – whether or not, and how often – is usually established by age 18,” said Al-Delaimy. “Hookah use is related to diseases, including coronary heart disease, adverse pulmonary effects and cancers of the lung, mouth and bladder. Hookah smoke also contains many of the same carcinogens and heavy metals as cigarette smoke; longer hookah smoking sessions, combined with increased smoke volume, makes it potentially more dangerous than cigarettes.”

Joshua Smith, PhD, from Al-Delaimy’s laboratory, surveyed 689 students from three high schools within San Diego County and found more than half of the students first learned about hookah from friends (50.3 percent) and another 20.9 percent learned about it when they saw a nearby hookah lounge.

“The concern here is that the students surveyed believed hookah use to be more socially acceptable than cigarettes, and friends seem to be introducing this habit to others. They also believe it is less harmful than cigarettes, cigars, and smokeless tobacco, which has not been reported previously among high school students,” said Smith.

Researchers recommend that the legality of hookah lounges in California and other states be addressed, adding that the banning of one product (cigarettes) with the legality of another (hookah) may suggest an element of reduced risk associated.

“Policy makers and the tobacco research community should reassess priorities for this age group and address the growing hookah epidemic through continued research, media messaging, and restrictions on hookah lounges,” said Al-Delaimy.

In addition to Al-Delaimy, the research team includes Joshua Smith, PhD, MPH, UCSD Department of Family and Preventive Medicine; Tomas E. Novotny, MD, MPH, San Diego State University; Steven D. Edland, PhD, UCSD Department of Family and Preventive Medicine; Richard Hostetter, PhD, San Diego State University; and Suzanne P. Lindsay, PhD, MSW, MPH, San Diego State University.

Debate fumes as Sydney apartments stub out smoking

An Australian apartment block which has banned residents from smoking in their homes has sparked anger from civil libertarians but advocates say it could be the way of the future for high-density living.

Owners of the apartments in Sydney’s inner western suburb of Ashfield agreed to introduce a by-law which bars anyone smoking inside their flats or on their balconies, the Sydney Morning Herald reported Saturday.

“We’ve made it a smoke-free zone in its entirety,” chairman of the owners’ corporate body Alex Antic told the paper.
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The move came about after some residents of the late 1960s building had complained about smoke drifting into their apartments from vents in the ceiling or from neighbours lighting up on their balconies.

“In addition, we had constant problems with cigarette butts all over the garden and footpath,” Antic said.

“So we asked our managers if we could have a by-law to ban all smoking in units as well as on common property and two weeks later they came back with a draft of a by-law to make the building a smoke-free zone in its entirety.”

Owners then accepted the proposal at an annual meeting, the paper said.

While those in real estate and apartment management said non-smoking residences could become more popular in high-density cities, civil libertarians labelled the move outrageous.

“You can’t ban the use of a lawful product in someone’s own home,” said New South Wales Council for Civil Liberties president Cameron Murphy.

“The next thing is they’ll be banning the drinking of coffee.”

More Youth Using Tobacco Alternatives

But according to the Washington State Department of Health, the rate of students smoking cigarettes has stabilized compared to a decade ago.

A state survey released this month found that the rate of youths who smoke cigarettes didn’t increase, but those who are using candy flavored or other alternative tobacco products did.

According to the Washington State Department of Health’s biannual Healthy Youth Survey, there were no significant increases in the rate of smokers among sixth-, eight-, 10th-, and 12th-graders who participated since a decade ago.

But cigarettes aside, another potential problem that the health department wants people to know about is the increase in “alternative” tobacco, and nicotine products, which are seemingly targeted at youth characteristics such as their candy flavor.

Other results:

  • Alcohol is the primary drug of abuse among youth, but the numbers are declining. Since 2008, there are about 11,000 fewer youth drinking alcohol. The message about the risks of prescription drug abuse is starting to get out there — pain medicine abuse is down among 12th graders.
  • When students are depressed, abuse substances, are bullied and feel unsafe at school, they’re less likely to succeed academically. About seven percent of 10th graders attempted suicide in the past year — down from the previous survey. Of 10th graders surveyed in 2010, 85 percent said they felt safe at school.
  • About 31 percent of 10th graders and 53 percent of 12th graders in the state reported having ever had sexual intercourse. About eight percent of 10th graders and 17 percent of 12th graders reported they had four or more sexual partners. Among those who had ever had sexual intercourse, about 63 percent of 10th graders and 54 percent of 12th graders reported using a condom the last time they had intercourse.

Japan Tobacco assesses effect of earthquake

Expressing their deepest sympathies to those who have been afflicted by the Pacific Ocean earthquake last Friday, Japan Tobacco evalution earthquuaketoday announced the presently known effect on the group.

In a press release, Japan Tobacco (JT) said it was unable to complete confirmation on safety of some of its employees because of communication problems with the afflicted areas and that it will continue to undertake the group-wide initiative to gain information.

“We will do everything we can to collect information, giving safety and human lives the first priority”, said the company.

JT’s factories at Kita-Kanto, Koriyama and Tomobe have suspended operations because of damage to the facilites, as has Tagajo factory of Nihon Filter, a JT group company. The extent of the damage is currently being assessed.

There was further damage to JT’s buildings in Morioka, Sendai, Mito and Utsunomiya sales offices, Sendai order processing center, and some distribution depots (located in Aomori, Morioka, Sendai, Mito and Utsunomiya) which belong to TS Network, a JT Group company, and some of these operations were suspended.

JT expects that the planned power cuts will have an effect on its operations, but the extent is yet to be determined.

In light of the anticipated effects on the supply of their products, JT announced that it “will do the best [they] can to secure supply”.

JT is continuing production in each of the group’s factories west of Tokai District.

Lorillard climbs on menthol discussion

Lorillard Inc.’s stock rose more than 2 percent on Tuesday as draft chapters from a report being put together by a Food and Drug Administration advisory panel indicated that menthol tobacco products may not raise a smoker’s risk of disease more than other cigarettes.

Lorillard, based in Greensboro, N.C., holds about 35 percent of the U.S menthol market with its top-selling Newport brand. It also makes Maverick and True cigarettes.

The company’s shares added $1.83, or 2.4 percent, to $78.59 in afternoon trading. The stock has traded between $70.24 and $89.71 over the past year.

The report’s final recommendations are expected to be given to the FDA by the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee by March 23. The FDA was given the authority in 2009 to regulate tobacco.

Menthol cigarettes have been a key area of growth for tobacco companies in a shrinking cigarette market.

Lorillard, the biggest U.S. tobacco company, spun off from Loews Corp. in 2008. The nation’s third-biggest tobacco company reported last month that its fourth-quarter earnings rose 7 percent as it sold more cigarettes at higher prices.

Tobacco Mosaic Virus

Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) is a type of retrovirus. TMV is a virus that attacks tobacco plants. It is closely related to the tomato mosaic virus (ToMV) which infects tomatos. Other plants that are susceptible to these types of virus include peppers and ornamentals like petunias and snapdragons. I did already know that the TMV has been widely studied, because it’s a commonly used vector for cloning foreign proteins into plants. Not knowing the answer to the above question myself, however, I had to look it up and discovered a few more cool things about the TMV.

  • TMV is an RNA virus, but that alone doesn’t make it a retrovirus. TMV carries a single strand of positive-sense RNA. It replicates by producing an anti-sense RNA strand using the positive strand as a template, from which more positive-sense RNA strands are made. Thus, TMV is a ssRNA virus with no DNA stage in it’s replication process, and NOT a retrovirus.
  • The name “mosaic” comes from the mottled pattern of colors the virus causes on leaves and fruit of infected plants.
  • TMV expresses a “movement protein” (MP) that controls RNA silencing signals (involving dsRNA and siRNAs) produced by host plants and intended to prevent the spread of the virus.

Consumption of tobacco products infected with the tobacco mosaic virus has not been found to have any effect on humans.

Cigarette packets to turn ugly under new initiative

New graphic images depicting the negative impact of smoking on health will soon be dominating cigarette packets across the country, according to health officials.

Four images featuring lung and lip cancers and stained teeth will be printed on 50 per cent of one side of each cigarette packet under an initiative spearheaded by the health ministry to highlight diseases related to smoking.

“The warning images will also include a pregnant woman smoking to highlight the risks associated with smoking during pregnancy,” Bassam Hijjawi, director of the ministry’s disease control department, told The Jordan Times over the phone on Sunday.

He added that the unsightly images will be featured on all tobacco products within the next six months, noting that the initiative was delayed by logistical issues.

Last year, the health ministry studied the possibility of enlarging the graphic warning printed on tobacco packets from 30 per cent to 50 per cent.

“Such a move requires a lot of money and effort from tobacco companies … we should be patient,” he said, stressing that such warning graphics have shown significant results in other countries as these images reduce the appeal of cigarettes.

“This is why a lot of tobacco companies have resorted to giving away free leather cases to hide the images,” Hijjawi said, indicating that Jordan was the first country in the region to put warning graphics on cigarette packets.

Under its adoption of the Framework Convention for Tobacco Control (FCTC), in 2006 the Kingdom obliged local tobacco companies to include an image of diseased lungs on cigarette packs as an additional warning against the dangers of smoking.

The image occupies one-third of one side of a cigarette packet, while a written warning against smoking covers a third of the other side.

The FCTC, the first treaty negotiated under the auspices of the World Health Organisation (WHO), was adopted by the World Health Assembly on May 21, 2003 and entered into force on February 27, 2005. It currently has 166 member parties, according to the WHO.

Article 9 of the convention requires state parties to develop and enforce measures to regulate the contents and emissions of tobacco products, while Article 10 stipulates adopting and implementing measures to require tobacco product manufacturers to disclose the contents and emissions of their products to authorities, in addition to making this information publicly available.

By Laila Azzeh
The Jordan Times