The Manitoba government is moving to ban the sale of flavoured cigarettes, saying they lure young people into smoking.

“No parent wants their child to smoke and we should do whatever we can to keep them from picking up this dangerous habit in the first place,” Healthy Living Minister Sharon Blady, making the announcement Wednesday at West Kildonan Collegiate.

Serena Desousa, a West Kildonan Collegiate student, said she was glad to see flavoured tobacco products banned.

“I think it s a good idea that we’re banning them because it does appeal to kids and it’s not like adults are gonna be smoking them,” said Desousa, a member of the group Students Working Against Tobacco.

It is estimated tobacco kills about 2,000 Manitobans every year, the government said.

  • Manitoba eyes ban on sale of flavoured tobacco

“Cigarettes that taste like strawberry and bubble gum in flashy packaging are attractive to children and encourage them to experiment with tobacco. It’s time that we remove these products from the shelves to help our kids avoid tobacco all together,” Blady said.

“We will be one of the first in Canada to ban the sales of these products, basically building further on our anti tobacco record.

Smoking rates among youth have actually declined in the province, from 29 per cent in 1999 to 13 per cent in 2012, but the government wants to continue that momentum.

Blady hopes the motion passes before the end of the legislature session in June.

Not banned menthols, flavoured tobacco

Menthol tobacco, flavoured tobacco and flavoured chewing tobacco products are not banned under the current legislation.

The province said loopholes in the federal legislation to do with the size of cigarettes limit their ability to control what kinds and how much tobacco can be banned right now.

But menthol cigarettes are exempt under federal legislation.

“We’re aware of the menthol and other issues related to tobacco this is a specific piece of legislation targeting this loophole, said Blady. The door is always open to investigating and monitoring other things.”

Cancer society reacts

The Canadian Cancer Society applauded the proposed legislation but said it needs to go further.

We are pleased to see the province take this initiative, said Erin Crawford, director of public affairs with the society s Manitoba division. By preventing the sale of these flavoured tobacco products, this amendment would be an important step in protecting young Manitobans from being tempted to purchase harmful products marketed as candy like goods and ultimately help to prevent cancer.

National Youth Smoking Survey data released in October 2013 showed that 49 per cent of high school students in Manitoba who used tobacco in the previous 30 days had used flavoured tobacco products, according to the cancer society.

Fruit and candy flavoured tobacco and the ability to buy inexpensive individual cigarettes (rather than whole packs) have made it easier for youth to become addicted to tobacco, the society stated in a news release.

But it also said it “would like to see the restrictions broadened to more products including menthol cigarettes and chewing tobacco which remain popular among young people,” noting the smoking survey also showed that 34 per cent of youth smokers in Manitoba had smoked menthol cigarettes in the previous 30 days.

“The high popularity of menthol cigarettes among youth contrasts with a low level of popularity among adults, with menthol cigarettes representing only four per cent of all cigarettes sold to adults in Canada,” the society’s news release stated.

Electronic cigarettes ‘don’t aid quitting’, study says : nature news & comment

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darrin gold 2014 03 25 01 44 PM The Rest of the Story I’m sad to say that this is complete garbage. It is truly an example of bogus, or junk science. Why? Because the study does not examine the rate of successful smoking cessation among electronic cigarette users who want to quit smoking or cut down substantially on the amount that they smoke and who are using e cigarettes in an attempt to accomplish this. Instead, the study examines the percentage of quitting among allsmokers who have ever tried electronic cigarettes for any reason in the past month. A large proportion of the 88 smokers who had tried an e cigarette may have simply been trying these products to see what they are like. It is plausible, in fact probable, that many of these 88 smokers were not actually interested in quitting or trying to quit with electronic cigarettes. These products have become very popular and have gained widespread media attention and it is entirely possible that many of these smokers simply wanted to see what the big fuss is all about. It is easy to see how this fatal flaw in the research destroys the validity of the authors’ conclusion. But that isn’t the end of the story. If this were simply a bogus conclusion, then we could simply evaluate the article as being junk science, dismiss it as bogus, and leave it there. But unfortunately, it doesn’t end there. Why? Because it is quite apparent from the study itself that the authors knew that the overwhelming majority of the 88 electronic cigarettes “users” in their study had little or no interest in quitting and were not using these products as part of a quit attempt. How do we know this? Because the authors tell us! In the Table, the authors report that of the 88 e cigarette “users,” only 8.0% reported that they were trying to quit at that time (that is, within the next 30 days). And only 39.8% of the e cigarette users had any intention of quitting in the next six months. This means that we actually know for a fact that the majority of e cigarette users in this study were not using these products as part of a quit attempt. What this indicates is that this is not simply junk science. Rather, it is a deliberate attempt on the part of the investigators to misuse data. They are using these data to draw a conclusion about whether electronic cigarettes are effective in helping smokers quit, yet they are knowingly drawing upon data from smokers who are using e cigarettes for other reasons, who may have simply tried an electronic cigarette once, and who most definitely were not using these products as part of a current quit attempt. In other words, 92% of the e cigarette users in the study were not trying to quit. We know for a fact that 92% of the e cigarette users were not making a quit attempt. And yet the study authors interpret the data as if these smokers were trying to quit using e cigarettes, but failed! This is dishonesty in research. Unfortunately, it does not appear that these investigators are truly interested in whether e cigarettes help many smokers quit or not. Instead, I believe that these researchers have a pre determined conclusion that e cigarettes are ineffective and that they are trying to manufacture results that support their pre determined conclusion. It would be a tragedy if policy makers use the conclusions of this “study” to draw conclusions about the effectiveness of electronic cigarettes for smoking cessation purposes. By Dr. Michael Siegel, Professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences, Boston University School of Public Health.