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    Consumer body warns of ‘misperception epidemic’ on vaping

    Photo: iStock

    As World No Tobacco Day (31 May) approaches, consumer body World Vapers’ Alliance (WVA) has expressed concern about the rampant ‘misperception epidemic’ surrounding tobacco harm reduction.

    With recent research by Ipsos for the think tank ‘We Are Innovation’ reveals that 74 per cent of smokers worldwide wrongly believe that vaping is as harmful or more harmful than smoking, the organisation noted that this “dangerous” misconception, fueled by misinformation, is preventing millions from switching to a scientifically proven, less harmful alternative.

    “The WHO has turned World No Tobacco Day into a propaganda day. Sweden is about to become smoke-free thanks to alternative nicotine products. The WHO needs to stop fighting alternative nicotine products and start backing them as keys to a smoke-free future,” Michael Landl, director of the WVA, said.

    “The WHO’s false claims are fueling a deadly misperception epidemic. Smokers deserve the truth: vaping is significantly less harmful than smoking. Accurate knowledge could save millions of lives.”

    The WVA added that this stance is supported by recent research and statements from public health authorities such as the UK’s National Health Service, highlighting the guide to ‘Vaping Myths and Facts’ published by the NHS, debunking significant misconceptions about vaping to help smokers access high-quality information.

    “However, misinformation from influential bodies like the WHO perpetuates false beliefs, hindering smokers’ access to life-saving alternatives,” the WVA said.

    The WVA will be organising a protest in front of the WHO headquarters on World Vape Day, 30 May, in Geneva, aiming to compel the WHO to listen to consumers and acknowledge the scientific evidence supporting vaping, nicotine pouches, and similar products as valid harm-reduction tools.

    The UN agency has last week released a report accusing the tobacco industry of trying to hook a new generation on vapes, and claiming that there is insufficient evidence vapes help people quit smoking.

    However, experts criticised the report, saying its claims “do not accurately reflect current evidence on e-cigarettes”.

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