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NFRN Asks Government To Support 'Vaping' As Cigarette Alternative

The National Federation of Retail Newsagents (NFRN) Ireland has called on the government and Department of Health "to recognise that e-cigarettes are part of the solution to the public health issues caused by smoking".

A survey conducted by Amárach research and published by Vape Business Ireland (VBI) has revealed a high level of public support for changing the government approach to e-cigarettes and similar products.

Three out of four respondents said they believe that governments should do all they can to encourage adult smokers to switch to these products from cigarettes, including developing reasonable regulations and tax rates on new potentially reduced-risk products.

The survey also found that 83% of people believe it is important to provide alternatives to adult smokers that are interested in them, 56% believe that e-cigarettes are a positive alternative to conventional cigarettes.

Just over three quarters (78%) agreed that information about e-cigarettes should be widely available, while 54% of adult smokers said it is important for them to see advertisements for e-cigarettes as a means of gathering information before switching.

Commenting on the survey results, NFRN Ireland President Peter Steemers said, "This survey shows that there is overwhelming public support for moving from a prohibitionist stance to one that embraces e-cigarettes as a part of the solution and a key tool in achieving the public health policy goal of reducing smoking prevalence to 5% by 2025.

"In the retail community we have often been told that we should look for alternatives to replace tobacco sales. However, now that a healthier alternative is finally emerging in the form of e-cigarettes we find that the attitude in the Department of Health is to shut this market down too and push to make it is a difficult as possible for us to get smokers to switch."

He concluded by saying, “What we need is a common sense approach but this will only ever come about if the Department of Health genuinely engages with the retail community and the public at large on this issue.”

© 2016 - Checkout Magazine by Jenny Whelan.

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