New statistics find the vaping industry has grown alongside a falling cost of entry for the products
Vaping is one of the most unique multi-billion dollar industries on the planet. For one thing, it’s likely the newest, having become widespread only over the last decade. With this growth though has come plenty of debate among individuals over how and when to best utilize the devices. Critics fear that accepting them for their harm reduction and smoking cessation value will inevitably lead to an influx of teens who falsely think they’re 100% harmless. Those in favor of vaping point to the lack of reputable research linking the legitimization of e-cigarettes with non-smoking teens picking up the habit.
While these battles are far from over, a new piece of evidence hopes to shed a little more light on how the vaping industry has grown at such an unexpected rate. The report called “National and State-Specific Unit Sales and Prices for Electronic Cigarettes, United States, 2012-2016”, aims to bridges the gap between what we know about the benefits of vaping and how to best take advantage of them. Among other trends, the team concluded that, at least over the last five years, the price of vaping products had dropped significantly alongside the industries growth.
The CDC’s New Report
The study was led by Dr. Teresa Wang of the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, which is run by the CDC. Dr. Wang and her team wanted to explore a question regarding vaping they felt goes severely under-researched, namely the sale and price trends of vaping products across the country. They used retail scanner data from the entire contiguous United States, including Washington D.C. This consisted of numbers from convenience stores, supermarkets, drug stores, club stores, dollar stores, even mass merchandisers and military commissaries. They split the figures into four categories consisting of rechargeables, disposables, prefilled cartridges, and e-liquids.
After analyzing the monthly data between 2012 and 2016, the team began to notice some interesting patterns. For starters, the monthly sales in all four categories rose significantly. At the same time, the average monthly cost of everything except e-liquids dropped significantly. Looking at the states individually, they found the average monthly price of rechargeables dropped in 39 states, disposables dropped in 31 states, prefilled cartridges in 20 states, and even e-liquid prices dropped in eight states. They believe these results indicate a “rapidly evolving landscape of US e-cigarette retail marketplace.” Ultimately they feel that understanding this topic better is integral to appropriately regulating and utilizing vaporizers.
Vaping and Health
While e-cigarettes are still too new to say anything with 100% certainty, there is a growing mountain of evidence that indicates they’re one of the best harm reduction and smoking cessation tools we currently have. We’ve known since at least 2015 thanks to Public Health England that vaping is at least 95% safer than smoking. Then just last fall a study published in the Journal of Aerosol Science concluded that the excess lifetime cancer risk of a vaper is around 57,000 times lower than that of a demographically similar smoker.
In addition to these reports on the harm reduction value of vaping, we also have a few key articles that indicate vaping may not only be a good smoking cessation tool but in fact the best one we have. A study published last fall by researchers out of the University of Louisville tested the effectiveness of several different smoking cessation aids and methods, including cold turkey and even prescription drugs. After the testing, the researchers concluded that vaping is more likely to lead to a successful quit attempt than anything else.
This new report by the CDC strongly indicates that vaping is a viable industry that is moving in the correct direction economically. It helps explain how vaping has exploded into such a robust industry in such a short period. These new figures alongside what we already know about the harm reduction and smoking cessation value of e-cigarettes make the strong case that vaping should be further utilized in countries looking to fight their smoking epidemic.
But to make this happen is going to take a lot of convincing the masses. Polls conducted by Action of Smoking and Health have indicated that only around 13% of adults correctly believe that vaping is much safer than smoking. But what’s worse is that twice that number have stated they think vaping is just as bad, if not more dangerous than tobacco. So it’s up to us to educate our peers about the real risks and benefits of e-cigarettes. If we genuinely want to use vaping to its full potential we need more than just research and economics, we need the support of the general population.
Are you surprised the cost of vaping has dropped as the demand increased? How many people do you know that falsely think vaping is just as bad, if not worse than smoking? What’s the best way to get more people to believe in your opinion? Let us know what you think in the comments, and don’t forget to check back here or join our Facebook and Twitter communities for more news and articles.