California's Ban on Flavored E-cigarettes Hasn't Slowed Sales

California's Ban on Flavored E-cigarettes Hasn't Slowed Sales
Despite California's flavor ban, Empire Imports' sales of flavored e-cigarettes remain stable with a 2% increase in February.

On February 24, the staff of 2FIRSTS Washington News Center interviewed Noel, the Market Director of Empire Imports, an electronic cigarette dealer in California, at the TPE exhibition. Noel stated that the flavor ban has not affected the sales of electronic cigarettes in California.

According to reports, California has banned the sale of flavored electronic cigarettes starting in November 2022.

According to Noel, despite the ban, flavored e-cigarette products, particularly fruit flavors like watermelon, blueberry lemon, and strawberry, are still being sold on the market in California. "After the ban went into effect, Empire's sales slightly decreased, but they have since rebounded by about 2% this month," said Noel.

According to reports, following the flavor ban, only 5%-10% of e-cigarette stores in California have closed. These closures were primarily small-scale businesses, while the majority of stores have maintained steady sales. However, e-cigarette stores are also exploring alternative products to flavored e-cigarettes, such as shifting to online sales or offering "flavorless" disposable e-cigarettes.

Noel stated that currently, Empire Imports' biggest challenge is not the seasoning ban, but rather the iteration and price differences of disposable e-cigarettes.

According to reports, the price of disposable electronic cigarettes in 2022 will be between 15 and 25 US dollars, depending on the number of puffs. Currently, the price for the same number of puffs is between 12 and 20 US dollars.

Noel stated that selling products with 7000 units at a price meant for 5000 units could harm the market of the latter, as there is a difference in quantity that needs to be taken into account.

As a result, Empire Imports' sales are currently slowing down. Noel stated that the company has approximately 12,000 SKUs of disposable e-cigarettes in stock and must sell them at cost in order to make room for future purchases of new products. Therefore, at present, Empire Imports has no demand for disposable items.

According to multiple sources surveyed by 2FIRSTS, the most important consideration for dealers in the American market when selecting products is price, with taste and quality being of secondary concern.

2FIRSTS will continue to track and report on the state of the electronic cigarette market in the United States. Stay tuned for updates.

Further reading:

of Vaping 【1】Interview with Bi-Coastal Distributors: Discussing the Flavor Ban, Disposable Vapes, and the Future of the Vaping Industry.

The ban on flavored tobacco in California, USA went into effect on December 21st.

The ban on flavored e-cigarettes in the United States has led to a rampant black market, with tobacco smuggling in New York state accounting for as much as 53.5% of the market.

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