E-cigarette sales are expected to go beyond $1 billion in 2013 and can reach up to $1.7 billion. This is according to Forbes.com in their article last September. Does this sound the death knell for big tobacco companies? Unfortunately, the answer may be no. Big tobacco is noticing this trend and is capitalizing on it by creating their own e-cigarette products. One of these e-cigarette products is Markten by Phillip Morris. It has been reviewed by Duane Green in this video.
The significance of this news highlights the industry prediction that by 2047, e-cigarette sales will surpass those of regular cigarette products. Personally, I feel that it could be sooner specially since cheaper China made e-cigarettes are already proliferating the market. It just might be possible for us to see sub $10 e-cigarettes making the rounds.
With high profile, comes government attention and the increase in sales of e-cigarettes has definitely gotten many governments' scrutiny. The plus side to this is better products that are monitored to keep the public safe. The down side to this is the possibility for additional taxes levied on e-cigarette products.
Another significance of this is market adoption. "Let the market decide" is a mantra that often precedes or succeeds business success. Have a good product? Let the market decide. Does the general public like it? Let the market decide. At this juncture in history, the market has already decided and the battle lines have been drawn. The question of who will rise up to the finish line remains to be seen.
As we have witnessed previously, it is apparent that big tobacco companies would stop at nothing to preserve their business model. That's why I am a bit averse to big tobacco companies entering the e-cigarette domain. Moreover, I am also concerned that the same bad practices may already be happening to the e-cigarette industry.
The question remains: how many e-liquids and e-cigarettes are actually manufactured by the very same big tobacco companies fronted by smaller and relatively unknown companies? This is a real concern for many e-cigarette enthusiasts who want to uplift companies that place public health and welfare above profits. I enjoin you, one e-cigarette user to another to be vigilant. Choose an e-cigarette brand that's not fronted by small companies with big tobacco behind it. Choose an e-cigarette brand that has your health as its priority.
Creative commons image via Flickr