Annapolis Valley Register : 2020-03-19

PROVINCIAL : 8 : A8

PROVINCIAL

PROVINCIAL A8 • THURSDAY, MARCH 19, 2020 ANNAPOLIS VALLEY REGISTER • SALTWIRE.COM VAPING Upcoming ban on flavoured products met with opposition LYNN CURWIN SALTWIRE NETWORK As someone who successful­ly used vaping to stop smoking, Shannon Crowe isn't in favour of a ban on flavoured juice. “I'm now five years smoke free because of vaping,” said the Bible Hill resident. “I used the fruity flavours; strawberry kiwi was my favourite. I started out vaping at a higherleve­l nicotine and weaned myself down to zero, then quit vaping altogether. ”I think a ban will cause some people who are vaping to go back to smoking cigarettes." On April 1, Nova Scotia will become the only province with a ban on flavoured ecigarette­s and juices. “I think it’s a bad move,” said Casey Murphy, a 25-yearold Truro resident. “I smoked through high school and after graduation. In 2015, I started vaping and quit smoking for about a year. During a stressful period, I began smoking again, but in 2016 I was back on vaping and haven’t had a cigarette since. I’m down to six milligrams now and was planning to quit vaping this year.” He feels he may be able to quit before he runs out of flavoured juice and is more concerned for his girlfriend. “She used to smoke like a chimney,” he said. “She vapes now but will only use strawberry flavour. She doesn’t feel she’s ready to quit vaping yet and I don’t want to see her smoking again. I’m afraid that will happen after flavours are banned. “It would be smarter to have rules cutting down the nicotine strength.” Darryl Tempest, executive director of The Canadian Vaping Associatio­n, also feels nicotine strength should be the main focus. “They’re banning flavours because of mass hysteria, without looking at possible implicatio­ns,” he said. “A flavour ban in no way addresses youth uptake. What we need to do is cap nicotine levels and sell in adult-only environmen­ts. “There was no youth uptake before 2018, when nicotine concentrat­ions were quite low. After big tobacco entered the market nicotine concentrat­ions increased dramatical­ly and there was more advertisin­g. “Look at the UK; they’ve only had a two per cent growth rate in vaping and they allow as much flavouring, but their nicotine levels are capped at 20 mg/ml, not 66. Part of the increase here is because people are looking for a nicotine buzz. Big tobacco hits us again.” He feels the black market will bloom once the ban goes into effect, and those products could be cut with Vitamin E acetate, which is prohibited in Canada and has been linked to people getting addicted to vaping.” Bonnie Connors didn’t have any luck using vape products to quit smoking either. “I tried it, but I just didn’t like it,” she said. “I’m still smoking but I hope to find something to help me quit.” Crowe said she doesn’t understand why there’s a ban being introduced on some harmful products, but not others. “It doesn't make sense to ban flavoured vape juice yet allow flavoured vodka and other fruity flavoured liquor to be sold,” she said. “I think at this point it’s just politics and will likely drive a black market for flavoured vape juices.” than smoking tobacco.” They reported that in the UK about 3.6 million people vape, of whom 54 per cent have given up smoking, 40 per cent both smoke and vape, and six per cent have never smoked. Vaping wasn’t an effective smoking cessation aid for Pat Cox. The 25-year-old Hilden man tried it for about two months. During that period, he was still smoking, although he’d cut down. “After a couple of months, I went back to smoking because I preferred it, but my uncle smoked most of his life and he quit by vaping, and now he’s quit vaping too,” he said. “It works for some people, but I understand worries about of nicotine. I think both need to be done simultaneo­usly. There should also be a ban on promotion and marketing. “I wouldn’t discourage someone who wanted to choose vaping over smoking. Vaping is the lesser evil. “As parents we have to help kids make good choices. Banning is one of the steps we can take. The public health education component is important too.” The CMA has called on Health Canada to restrict the level of nicotine in vaping products, as well as ban flavours. The Royal College of Physicians has advised people that vaping is “far less harmful lung issues in the U.S. “We know smoking is dangerous, with health risks stemming from tars and chemicals,” he said. “Ninety to 95 per cent of adult users are on flavoured products and I think at least half will go back to smoking.” Tempest used vaping to quit smoking himself, starting with juice containing 18 mg/ml and now down to 3 mg/ml. Sandy Buchman, president of the Canadian Medical Associatio­n, considers the flavour ban a step in the right direction. “We know it is the flavoured products that attract youth,” he said. “If they taste bad they won’t use them. We also need to lower the concentrat­ion lynn.curwin@trurodaily.com @trurodaily LIKE WHAT YOU’RE READING? We have more online! Visit saltwire.com/now-atlantic for the latest. Want even more? Sign up for our monthly newsletter at and follow us on saltwire.com/newsletter­s @NowAtlanti­c