Press Release

Leaked Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan threatens consumer choice

A leak of the upcoming “Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan” signals the European Commission’s determination to create a “Tobacco-Free Generation” by turning a blind eye to science. In particular, according to the leaked proposal (attached below), the Commission fails to acknowledge vaping as an innovative way to reduce harm associated with smoking and as a method to help smokers quit.

The leaked proposal reveals the push to expand taxation to “novel tobacco products,” including vaping; extend the coverage of the smoking bans indoor and outdoor to e-cigarettes, and a broad flavour ban.

“Europe’s Beating Cancer plan is a momentous opportunity to embrace innovative ways of fighting cancer. The stakes are extremely high, and the European Union simply cannot afford to get it wrong. Vaping was invented to help smokers quit by providing them with a safer alternative. As of today, endorsing vaping is the best-known way to balance out an urgent need to reduce cancer rates and the need to protect consumer choice of current and future generations in the EU,” said Luca Bertoletti, Senior European Affairs Manager at the Consumer Choice Center.

“Vaping has gained popularity among European smokers precisely because it reduces harm. The proposed restrictive approach won’t drive down demand. Rather, it will result in a spike in illicit trade which, in turn, will endanger European consumers and increase the budget losses from uncollected taxation.

“If the European Commission proceeds with this version of the plan, it will not only fail to fight cancer, but will also miss out on a chance to put Europe on the path toward a pro-innovation, pro-consumer choice, and pro-science future. We at the Consumer Choice Center call on the Commission to reconsider its antiquated approach to beating cancer and recognise the life-saving potential of vaping. Let us make the most out of a once-in-generation opportunity to put in place a policy that saves lives,” concluded Bertoletti.

Consumer advocacy group sends a letter on airport slots waiver to Brussels

Brussels, BE – Today, the Consumer Choice Center, the consumer advocacy group representing and empowering consumers in the EU and globally, sent a letter to Director-General Henrik Hololei to express their deep concerns about the Commission’s intention to extend the waiver of the “use-it-or-lose-it” rule for the entire 2020-2021 winter season.


Russian Apple law: a cold war with an American tech giant?

Moscow, Russia – Fedot Tumusov, a member of the Russian State Duma, proposed a law that would force Apple to cut app store commission fees down from 30 per cent to 20 per cent. The law would require that a third of the app store commission be paid to the Russian government as part of a fund to train IT specialists.


Airport Ranking: Zurich is Europe’s best airport

“This year has been one of the most challenging for the global travel industry. Many airports were closed for weeks or even months. While travel slowly recovers we want to inform consumers which airports are the most convenient to travel from and to in Europe. Airports with more space per passenger rank higher in our analysis. This is helpful to know for travelers who try to maintain distance from others. If you have to travel this Summer, you might want to consider starting or ending your journey at well-designed airports such as Zurich, Düsseldorf, or Copenhagen.


L’inps ha violato la privacy di milioni di Italiani

Nonostante questa scelta dei parlamentari possa essere considerata inopportuna, e sicuramente è l’ennesima prova di una classe politica inadeguata,  l’INPS e il suo presidente questa volta hanno superato ogni limite della legalità. – dice Luca Bertoletti, responsabile Europeo del Consumer Choice Center. 


Großbritannien ist kein Vorbild beim Kampf gegen Übergewicht — Bevormundung ist der falsche Weg — Deutschland braucht Aufklärung und Innovation

Maria Chaplia, European Affairs Associate für das Consumer Choice Center, meint dass ein Verbot von Fernsehwerbung und die generelle Einführung von Werbebeschränkungen die Fettleibigkeitsrate nicht senke, sondern stattdessen erheblichen wirtschaftlichen Schaden verursachen würde. Außerdem bevormundeten sie die Verbraucher und würden die Meinungsfreiheit untergraben.


Germany shouldn’t follow the UK’s flawed obesity strategy

“Overall, ad bans would target consumption of junk food but it is the exercise that many children lack. According to a report published by the European Commission and the WHO in 2018, only 19% of 11-13-year olds in Germany were physically active. The situation is disastrous, and by opting for junk food ad bans, the German government will simply regulate in the wrong direction.


Scrapping COVID Patents: PM Johnson needs to resist populist calls




Fred Roeder, Managing Director, Consumer Choice Center

Scrapping COVID Patents: PM Johnson needs to resist populist calls

London, UK –  In a report published today by the House of Commons International Trade Committee, Members of Parliament suggest to allow for compulsory licensing of drugs for COVID-19. Under compulsory licensing laws, a government has the power to revoke patent rights from innovators or companies if a discovery they made provides vital treatment or protection related to a national health emergency. Fred Roeder, Health Economist and Managing Director of the Consumer Choice Center warns that such erosion of intellectual property would lead to the opposite and eventually harm patients:

“Compulsory licensing is threatening to move the goalposts on how intellectual property rights are protected. If domestic and foreign companies are prevented from retaining their patent licenses, this could hinder the production and supply of essential goods to the population further than they already are. A compulsory licensing bill could place even more barriers for pharmaceutical innovators, which could further discourage these kinds of companies from investing or listing their drugs in the UK.

There are many ways to make easier access to vaccines and drugs for example a mutual recognition of FDA and EMA approvals and fast-tracking some type of medicines. In order to be prepared for the next pandemic, we need to increase and not curb incentives for innovation. Right now we need to do everything that makes pharmaceutical research more agile – Introducing compulsory licensing on COVID drugs and vaccines is not the right way. While might help in the short term but jeopardizes our ability to tackle health crises early on in the long run,” concludes Roeder.

***CCC’ Fred Roeder is available to speak with accredited media on consumer regulations and healthcare issues. Please send media inquiries HERE.***


The CCC represents consumers in over 100 countries across the globe. We closely monitor regulatory trends in Ottawa, Washington, Brussels, Geneva and other hotspots of regulation and inform and activate consumers to fight for #ConsumerChoice. Learn more at

Flavor bans push consumers across borders

David Clement, North American Affairs Manager with the Consumer Choice Center responded: “How many times do we have to be reminded that prohibition doesn’t work? A decline in tax revenue is a predictable consequence of prohibition-style bans. It was naive for Massachusetts legislators to think that their ban wouldn’t increase sales across state lines. To make matters worse, other states like California and Illinois are considering enacting similar bans in their states,” said Clement.


Businesses and schools need COVID-19 liability shields

Consumer Choice Center Deputy Director Yaël Ossowski responded: “The nature of the virus means it is almost certain that someone, somewhere, will catch the virus. That means huge potential legal ramifications if a person wants to hold an institution or business liable,” he wrote in the Detroit Times.


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