5 FEATURE Five Years of Next Generation Nicotine The November conference in London will be a milestone event By Leo Forfar The Next Generation Nicotine Delivery conference is returning for its fifth instalment in November. With the e-cigarette trade as a cornerstone of nicotine delivery and a driver of innovation, the event has become an unmissable calendar date for industry figureheads and a platform for informed discussion of the most pressing issues. Attendees can expect a democratisation of NGND as an open forum, where crowd-sourced issues are given the spotlight and experts are free to deliberate. “The event has a clear aim to bring the industry together and we seek to bridge relationships and share insight from across the globe. As part of our commitment we designed interactive roundtable sessions which saw small groups engage in open discussion on crowd-sourced topics.” Attendees who represent every corner of this diverse industry spoke glowingly of last year’s conference. NGND 2017’s feedback page contains hearty endorsements from liquid manufacturers, suppliers of flavours and packaging, testing labs, wholesalers and research institutes. Speaking of newness, 2018 has also been the year which saw the launch of Next Generation Nicotine USA. The two-day event in April rivalled the success of its British forebear, bringing “over 150 senior executives from the next generation products sector from across the US and Canada.” Ever at the cutting edge, the 2018 UK conference will also analyse the growing role of heated tobacco in nicotine delivery, the rise of cannabidiol, and the usefulness of salt-based nicotine. This years agenda covers “Transforming The Mainstream: Developments In Europe’s Retail Environment!” Programme Director David Jones spoke to Vapouround about hitting the five-year mark and what lies ahead. 74 | VM19 Did you have any idea Next Generation Nicotine would achieve this much? At the point of launching this event back in November 2014, we really had no idea the event, and overall sector, would grow to the size it is today. We have overseen the growth of the conference at a parallel with the growth of Europe’s next generation nicotine delivery products’ category, mainly the vape sector. Industry reporters are continuing to forecast double-figure growth across Europe, and we hope our London conference to grow alongside this and remain the go-to event for Europe’s next generation nicotine delivery product manufacturers. Recent months have seen a rise in the profile of heat-not-burn products. Though predictions are tricky in this trade, what does it mean for the vaping industry exactly? My personal opinion would be that the rise of heat-not-burn products will not slow down the growth of the vape sector in Europe. HnB and vape are both different products, both attracting very different consumers. As an ex-smoker myself, having tried HnB and vaping – I have settled on vaping. However, I believe for the overall next generation products’ category HnB may be able to tempt more smokers away from combustible tobacco and move them onto a safer alternative – which is certainly not a bad thing. Within Europe it may still be too early to tell, however I don’t expect the rising profile of HnB products to hamper the growth of the vape category. Typically, vapers are loyal consumers, demonstrating continual shop and brand loyalty.