Tobacco Harm Reduction and Novel Nicotine and Tobacco Products
Evidence from the Japanese Market
In recent years, the application of harm reduction principles to tobacco use (“tobacco harm reduction” or THR) has been stimulated by the development and commercial launch of novel nicotine and tobacco products (NNTPs), such as e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products (HTPs), which are viewed by some public health bodies as likely to be less harmful than inhaling the combustion products in conventional cigarette smoke. However, the role of NNTPs in public health policy remains controversial, with significant concerns remaining about both their short-term and long-term effects.
The country which has witnessed the largest switching of smokers to NNTPs is Japan. While the impact of NNTPs on smoking in Japan may be relatively unknown internationally, it merits greater scrutiny and debate. This white paper describes the impact of the commercial launch of NNTPs on tobacco use in Japan, and discusses the regulatory approach that the Japanese government is taking to NNTPs.
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