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MIAMI — Electronic cigarettes and vapor products are not approved as smoking cessation devices by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA); however, a new survey indicates that is exactly why users are turning to the products.
Miami-based V2, a brand of electronic cigarette and vaporizer products, commissioned a study in which 300 U.S. adult e-cigarette users were asked to explain why they "vape."
When asked to identify the reasons they choose to use electronic cigarettes:
- 62 percent said they do so "to quit or abstain from smoking cigarettes"
- 38 percent identified as dual users, vaping e-cigarettes "to obtain nicotine when unable to smoke cigarettes"
- 36 percent said they "preferred the flavors and taste over traditional tobacco cigarettes"
- 29 percent said they did so because e-cigarettes are more "socially acceptable than smoking cigarettes"
"For most adult smokers, vaporizing devices like electronic cigarettes represent a legitimate alternative to combustible cigarettes," said Adam Kustin, vice president of marketing, V2. "Smokers are increasingly shifting away from combustibles in favor of vaping. This is why the recent FDA ruling to regulate e-cigarettes like tobacco products is discouraging."
The respondents were polled online between May 11 and 12, just days after the FDA released its final deeming rule. The deeming rule goes into effect Aug. 8. It extends the FDA's authority to all tobacco products, allowing it to now regulate electronic cigarettes, cigars, hookah tobacco, pipe tobacco and more, in addition to cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, which have fallen under its authority since Congress passed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009.
According to another V2 poll of 300 vapers released on June 7, among e-cigarette users, three-quarters believe that electronic cigarettes "should be subject to some sort of regulatory process."
However, in an April survey also conducted by V2 with 600 respondents, 57 percent said that they were against any federal regulations by the FDA. Of this 57 percent, 27 percent said regulations should occur locally and 13 percent said the industry should self-regulate.
In the June 7 survey, 49 percent of respondents said they would return to smoking combustible cigarettes if regulations drove e-cigarettes off the market.