There is undoubtably a growing evidence-base and public awareness of the positive impact new nicotine products and technologies have had in encouraging and supporting smokers to switch to safer alternatives. The continued increase in numbers vaping, using heated tobacco products and other non-combustible alternatives, such as snus and nicotine pouches, has transformed habits and also disrupted the traditional markets for tobacco.
The economic impact of these changes, short and long-term, cannot be ignored. This applies at an individual level – for smokers switching – as well as to companies developing, manufacturing and distributing new products and to governments, in terms of tax revenues and potential savings in health costs.
The programme will be designed to address some key issues, attempting to identify examples of good policy and practice, as well as identifying obstacles to effecting change. Some work has been done on modelling costs, benefits and opportunities presented by safer nicotine and thought leaders will be asked to address these, including:
- Tobacco harm reduction:: Misapplication of the precautionary principle – what does this mean and how has it impacted in other spheres of harm reduction?
- What are the potential costs of prohibition? Using historical comparisons with the health, social and economic costs in relation to alcohol, as well as the continuing – and failing – ‘war on drugs’
- Science and denial – and examination of the health of THR science
- Cost benefit analysis of safer nicotine products – for smokers, manufacturers and governments
- ‘Hijacking THR – our own “culture war”?’ – how principles are held hostage to fortune, when good headline policy is undermined by the ‘devil in the detail’
- Opportunities for safer nicotine – therapeutic use in overlooked groups and populations
- Tobacco control: costs and benefits – do tobacco control measures continue to produce tangible benefits, or is a radical overhaul required?
Each day will feature key-note presentations, with a respondent and the opportunity for Q&A, as well as moderated panel discussions. Parallel sessions will comprise the ScienceLab, workshops, the Film Festival and ISonTech.
As in previous years there will also be the Michael Russell Oration and awards, plus the GFN Commentary Team broadcasts throughout the conference.
For the programme outline see here.