COVID-19, nicotine and e-cigarettes - best of 2020

Covid-19, nicotine taxes and vejp shopping. That's what you like to read about. At least if the statistics from Google and Facebook are anything to go by. Vejpkollen thanks you for an eventful 2020 and hopes for an equally exciting 2021. That said, here is a sort of top list of articles and topics that have interested you, dear readers, over the past year.

It would be ridiculous to call 2020 a normal year. With a global pandemic and huge societal implications to prevent the spread of infection, the year for e-cigarettes has been turbulent to say the least. And this is reflected in how interest in the Vejpkollen articles is spreading online.

Nicotine and Covid-19

At the very top are articles if COVID-19 and nicotine. Can nicotine affect the onset, symptoms and danger of a Covid-19 infection? Yes, that is the question. It started with an article in the Daily Mail, The Guardian and then Aftonbladet. Smokers were more rarely affected by Covid-19 than they should. Vejpkollen wanted to go deeper and added comments from some relevant voices in nicotine and e-cigarette research. And a few words from our Swedish trade association, BELC. Almost 4000 readers found the article in 2020. The news had a few follow-ups with local scientists, among them Louise Adermark from the University of Gothenburg and interest in the issue has been constant throughout the year. When further research showed the same results as the French study, it raised interest again. These articles are Vejpkollen's most googled in 2020.

But why the huge interest in nicotine and Covid-19? Maybe because smokers and other nicotine users were put in the spotlight? In a positive light, too? Has that EVER happened before? Answer: no. Suddenly nicotine was something that was maybe a little bit GOOD? Opponents of nicotine raged and tried to brush it off. They succeeded reasonably well. They have great resources, good media contacts, and it was easy to "spin" the news to be only about tobacco companies and economic interests. At least in the mainstream media.

Neither vaccine nor medicine

But research is research. And those who are interested in nicotine know that there is plenty of data to support the view that nicotine itself is a fairly harmless substance - addictive, perhaps - but not deadly. We do not yet know if nicotine reduces the risk of COVID-19.. And IF that turns out to be the case, it is, as Anders Tegnell and other epidemiologists would say, something that matters most at the population level and not for individuals. Nicotine is neither vaccine nor medicine.

You don´t know nicotine

At the same time, we know that nicotine is high-level business. The market includes tobacco companies, pharmaceutical companies and, more recently, small independent traders of e-cigarettes. That nicotine is not uncontroversial is the theme of the documentary. "You don´t know nicotine" which had a streaming premiere a la Covid-19 in the autumn. Great film! Watch it!

New shop attracted many readers

As number two on the list we find an article that actually appeared at the end of 2019. It is about a closure - and a new start. True Gentlemen's was born when Vapor Store, which had six stores in five cities, went bankrupt. Two employees took over the business in Landskrona and Helsingborg. Nearly 2000 people have found the article via Google and social media during the year.

Shops selling e-cigarettes popular

News about vejp shoppers are among the most read articles in Vejpkollen overall. When Cigoteket changed owners many people were curious about what had happened. When Ecocig was in the spotlight due to alleged breaches of the Marketing Act, the vejps woke up wondering what the real situation is. with Swedish legislation. Road users were also at the centre of attention when the Covid pandemic demanded new ways of doing business. manage sales in an infection-proof way. When Circle K started sell simple e-cigs it raised both feelings and discussion. And then, in the midst of the pandemic, an additional new vejpshop in the centre of Gothenburg. Vejpkollen was there, of course. In total, you readers have clicked over 3000 times to articles about vejp shopping. Let's hope for more of the same in 2021. 

Nicotine tax, tax on nicotine and more tax

The reality for our Swedish vejp shoppers has changed in recent years. If it isn't pandemics, it is confused reporting on health risks with e-cigarettes or new laws and treasure that shakes the market. 

The new nicotine tax, which will apply from January 2021. "A death blow for vejpning in Sweden", it is described by the people in the field. "An effective way to reduce nicotine consumption" says the Ministry of Finance, which nevertheless expects to million revenues with the new tax on highly concentrated nicotine. The proposal was made in February and the articles have been attracting readers throughout 2020. Overall, articles on the nicotine tax have actually attracted by far the most readers throughout the year - although interest varies depending on the article. Whatever you think about the tax, it has did not come as a surprise for Vejpkollen readers.

And they want to remove the flavours...

What came as a surprise, however, was the flavour ban in Denmark. Not because it was unknown, the proposal came in December 2019, but because it was is contrary to EU law. Something that both the Danish government and Danish vejp companies are well aware of. We haven't seen the end of this, and expect protests, at least at EU level.

Tougher laws for e-cigarettes in 2021

And speaking of the EU. New Tobacco Directivealso known as TPD 3, is currently being finalised and 2021 will be the year of the most intense negotiations. On the table are the regulation of flavourings and tax directives. The consumer organisation ETHRA represents e-cigarette users in the EU and will be busy this year, believe me. Vejpkollen will of course follow developments.

Important for how e-cigarettes are regulated are research. And that will be the focus of the next article on e-cigarettes, vejpning and the world in 2020.

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