With usage of electronic cigarettes on the rise, a new study by e-cig manufacturer Mistic contends the majority of Americans are not opposed to second hand vapor.
The study, conducted by Harris Interactive, show that 63% of those surveyed said they would not be bothered by someone using an electronic cigarette in close proximity. The survey also asked Americans whether they would approve or disapprove of e-cigarette use at certain public places that typically ban smoking of traditional tobacco cigarettes. Of the Americans who had an opinion one way or the other, the survey found that 58% of respondents approved of allowing e-cigs to be used at sporting events, followed by malls (47%), restaurants and bars (45%), in an office (35%), on public transportation (35%), in a movie theater (29%) or on an airplane (26%).
Putting aside the self-serving nature of the results contained in Mistic’s 2014 American E-Cigarette Etiquette Survey, the research is hitting a marketplace in a state of flux. Usage of electronics cigarettes is on the rise and creating new sales opportunities for retailers in a category projected to reach $10 billion in sales by 2017, according to Wells Fargo. Mistic’s products are currently available at 40,000 stores and the company has an interest in ensuring “vapers” don’t come under the same type of restrictions as traditional smokers. Meanwhile, traditional cigarette smoking is at its lowest level in a half century. Major chains such as Dollar General and Family Dollar added cigarettes to their product assortments last year while those with more of a health orientation, such as CVS, recently announced plans to discontinue cigarette sales later this year.
“The electronic cigarette industry is growing rapidly here and around the world, and we want to be the first U.S. company to measure American attitudes on vaping,” said survey spokesman John Wiesehan Jr., co-founder and CEO of E-cig manufacturer Mistic. “Because the e-cigarette is a relatively new consumer product, there are a lot of questions about government regulation and whether these devices should be allowed in certain places. This survey serves as an important first step in setting the benchmark for public opinion.”
Given that E-cigs look similar to traditional cigarettes, the immediate reaction among some proprietors has been to ban usage of the products.
“The fact is e-cigarettes don’t possess any of the negative attributes commonly associated with traditional tobacco,” Wiesehan said. “There is no smoke, only vapor, and they don’t smell, they don’t invade clothes or leave ash or stubs. More importantly, many of the negative side effects associated with smoking are minimized by switching to e-cigarettes.”
Those things may all be true, but there are still plenty of people who would rather not be in the vicinity of someone puffing nicotine laced vapor from an electronic cigarette while shopping, dining out, watching a movie or taking in a game.