Tobacco remains the leading cause of avoidable mortality in the contemporary world with a growth rate of more than 3% per year. French smokers are at the top of the list on the European continent, despite the efforts made by the Macron government since its election. However, the recorded statistical data distort the optimistic results of French health policy which has led to a decrease of more than one million smokers between 2016 and 2017. This result is inherent to the iron fist applied to cigarette sellers, but also by proposing parallel solutions that are nicotine substitutes cheaper than tobacco, such as patches and especially e-cigs.
France at the top of Europe in terms of smoking
Before the election of the new president in 2017, the French were around the 60th place on the list of smokers in the world. This is a staggering figure that is worth 3 percent of GDP, a value that can be calculated at more than 1,000 euros per year for each smoker. The first cause of this statistic is the affordable price of tobacco, supported by the precocious smoking of young people who are more likely to smoke compared to the 2000s.
Remedy by a policy against this accessibility was established by the Minister of Public Health Agnès Buzyn by a chronic and biannual increase in the price of the package, to eliminate this first contact with young people and the addiction of heavy smokers. This prevention will extend until 2020 when the expected price will be 10 euros, much too expensive to become a “Must” of the organization.
The French on the road to liberation
The minister’s decision-making has been more than effective with this cyclical reform. The reform discourages both heavy smokers and directs them to other healthier and more economical alternatives. Indeed, to remove a smoker from the sudden stop of his usual consumption is not the ideal solution since it risks destabilizing him morally. To this end, the ministerial cabinet has provided economic assistance to those who will take the step towards the tobacco substitute, including support and reimbursement as for drugs.
Between 2016 and 2017, the growth strategy was a success because 1 million smokers quit the daily cigarette for economic reasons. In addition, the proposal of new formulas for weaning tobacco begins to convince the vast majority of smokers who want to stop. Among them, there is the electronic cigarette, the best alternative tobacco, which provides nicotine, offers better sensations, accords with the public health (no smell of tobacco, no toxic smoke, no passive smoking).
E-cigs and French smokers
The hardest part of leaving tobacco is nicotine substitution. The French are heavy consumers of cigarettes and rarely find their way to weaning alone or through patches. With the advent of the electronic cigarette (versatile tobacco substitute), the deal has changed yet more than 25% of assisted attempts have succeeded thanks to the e-liquid and its properties namely: the liquid aroma, the rate of nicotine, the sensation of hit. Vapoter in France remains the only effective corridor to quit smoking. In another context, the vape is rather considered as an alternative to cigarettes and not necessarily to tobacco.