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Teens Are Still Vaping, Companies Are Still Reaping the Rewards

Written by Monica Savaglia
Posted February 18, 2020

Trends come and go. It seems like something that happened two weeks ago was a lifetime ago. I think it has a lot to do with the amount of news and information that’s presented to us at all times of the day.

I’ve always been someone who wants to stay informed, so I do follow the social media of a lot of news publications, and, because I like those news publications, I get fed more advertisements or I’m shown social media accounts “that I might like.” So sometimes I hear the same story but with a few alterations and that it makes me interested to see how another outlet may have approached it. 

A few months ago (well, to be honest, it feels like years ago), I was reading about the ban on teen vaping. The popular vaping company Juul was taking a huge hit because regulators accused it of advertising to teenagers with its “fun” flavored nicotine products. 

Vaping quickly became popular, advertised as an alternative to cigarette smoking. It appealed to many smokers for that reason — it was considered to be “healthier,” which is something that can’t be proven since the product hasn’t even been on the market long enough for comprehensive studies to be conducted.

Well, just when I thought I was staying informed about the Trump administration's vaping restrictions, there was more to the story... as there usually is.

The topic of vaping was getting a lot of attention; people couldn't get enough of the headlines. Market research group Euromonitor estimates that the number of adults who vape will reach almost 55 million by 2021 — an obvious increase from the 41 million reported in 2018. 

It has become extremely popular over the few short years that it has been public. The younger generation always seems to be a step ahead, and their attraction to the idea and convenience of vaping were factors in its popularity. By October 2019, Juul had pulled most of its flavored pods from the market, but teens were already onto the next thing.

Meredith Berkman, the co-founder of the advocacy group PAVE, Parents Against Vaping E-cigarettes, said:

Juul is almost old school… It’s no longer the teen favorite. Among the disposables [that] are most popular, there’s Puff Bar, there’s Stig, there’s Viigo. These have just flooded the market.

Thanks to the partial ban's focus on Juul’s products, new brands have found something of a “loophole” for selling their products.

Matt Myers of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids said, “It won’t take the kids and it hasn’t taken the kids any time to make a switch [to newer products].”

On to the Next Best Thing…

The market is growing for e-cigarettes, and that’s all most companies think about — making a profit. The industry isn’t stupid and has found creative ways to get new products out on the market because the money is there and missing out on that type of opportunity would be stupid. There is a customer base, and they want the product they’ve grown accustomed to. 

Christine Delnevo, the director of the Center for Tobacco Studies at Rutgers University, said, “It’s a bit of a game of whack-a-mole, so when policies are aimed at one product, another product pop-ups to fill the void.

It’s not about brand loyalty with these younger generations. It’s about fulfilling something that is a part of them and now a part of their identity, something they can use to fit in or feel accepted because, after all, they are teenagers. They're impressionable and crave acceptance. 

The government needs to be smarter, stricter, and use better strategies. These new products from other companies are extremely appealing and also very dangerous to the health of these younger generations. 

Meyers also said, "Young people are inhaling more deeply and getting higher levels of nicotine in their lungs than they would have with a cigarette."

Disposable flavored vapes from Puff Bar have become extremely popular because of the range of sweet and fruity flavors like pink lemonade. “And when you inhale it, it has a sweet, sugary flavor,” Myers said.

As I mentioned, the market for these products is growing, and it’s hard for companies to ignore the profit potential of getting younger generations addicted.

Until next time,

Monica Savaglia Signature Park Avenue Digest

Monica Savaglia

Monica Savaglia is Wealth Daily’s IPO specialist. With passion and knowledge, she wants to open up the world of IPOs and their long-term potential to everyday investors. She does this through her newsletter IPO Authority, a one-stop resource for everything IPO. She also contributes regularly to the Wealth Daily e-letter. To learn more about Monica, click here.

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