E-Cigarette Consumer Association of the UK
ECCA UK, the Electronic Cigarette Consumer Association of the United Kingdom, is an independent non-profit association that exists to protect consumers' rights, to provide correct information about electronic cigarettes, and to represent consumers' interests to the industry. See our Mission Statement.
We represent the 700,000-plus e-cigarette owners in the UK .
ECCA is a consumer advocacy group and has no affiliation with any vendor or trade association.
ECCA will work together with other consumer groups in Europe and elsewhere to protect and promote the interests of the growing number of smokers who have found a better alternative and who demand that their rights are respected.
ECCA will promote consumers' interests at local, national and European level; provide research resources; provide media resources; support the electronic cigarette industry in initiatives that benefit the community; and work for consumers to ensure that industry standards are maintained and improved.
ECCA is the most important stakeholder in Tobacco Harm Reduction in the UK, since we speak for the largest group of Harm Reduction users. THR is the only proven way to reduce smoking significantly below the 20% prevalence point: once the number of smokers reduces to around one-fifth of the population, the reduction stalls - as has been demonstrated in the UK and other countries. See: the 20% Rule
In contrast, the THR (Tobacco Harm Reduction) approach in Sweden has reduced smoking by about 50% compared to the UK. Smoking prevalence is at just 11% there versus the UK's ~20%, and still falling by 1% per year. Sweden now has the lowest smoking-related mortality of any developed country by a wide margin.
In the UK, smokers are now switching to e-cigarettes at about 1% per year.
So we know that consumer-based THR reduces smoking prevalence by 1% per year; but the NHS reduces the number of smokers in the UK by only around 0.001% per year. A consumer THR approach is therefore shown to be about 1,000 times more successful than the State-supported pharmaceutical-based process. Nevertheless, there is unfounded and unjust pressure to regulate e-cigarettes out of contention. Such pressure can be shown to be almost entirely commercially-based, funded by the pharmaceutical and cigarette industries.
Bans, restrictions or over-regulation of e-cigarettes will have a hugely damaging effect on public health. Who exactly will benefit? Certainly not UK citizens.
Who does ECCA UK represent?
We represent the 6% to 7% of UK smokers who have switched to an e-cigarette . We do that by listening to what they tell us on the ECCA forum and on the several other UK e-cigarette community forums, and by using that information to form our policies.
Tobacco Harm Reduction
E-cigarettes are by far the most important factor in tobacco harm reduction today. Nothing else even begins to approach their importance in this area.
Because ECCA represents the largest grouping of current actual users of successful Tobacco Harm Reduction solutions, the UK electronic cigarette user community of around three-quarters of a million people (growing so fast that 6% of UK smokers had already switched by Q4 2012), ECCA is the most important stakeholder in tobacco harm reduction in the UK.
Our members demand their right to be heard, and we will ensure that their voice is heard.
 E-Cigarette users in the UK were measured by ASH UK at 310,000 in 2010, and 650,000 at Q2 2012. At Q1 2013 there are believed to be between 600,000 (ECCA lowest estimate) and 800,000 (extrapolation of ASH UK 2012 research figure) electronic cigarette users in the UK, meaning that more than 6% of UK smokers have switched.
This percentage figure depends on how many UK smokers there are, and if you accept the lowest-possible estimate of 10m smokers, then 7% are now ecig users. Since about half of ecig users will have transitioned to being non-smokers at any given time, it means that ecigs have created a drop of 3%+ in smoking prevalence in the UK, measured at Q1 2013. This reduction in smoking prevalence will gradually grow, and then will start to be reflected in the national health statistics, as all smoking-related diseases will start to fall in proportion (as happened in Sweden).