About 470 people a day have switched from smoking to vaping over the last two years in the U.K. A new study says British smokers are switching to vaping faster than in other European countries.
Vapers in the U.K. told researchers that reducing the harm of smoking was their primary reason for switching. And 2.2 million British people – 4.2 percent of the population – are vaping, which is a 55 percent increase in three years. France has the second highest vaping population, with 3.1 percent. Of the more than two million vapers in the U.K., 850,000 say they no longer smoke.
The study was done by EY (formerly Ernst and Young), a global accounting and tax services company. It was commissioned by Nicoventures Holdings Limited, a subsidiary of British American Tobacco (BAT) dedicated to non-combustible nicotine products, including e-cigarettes.
The rapid growth has been encouraged by the acceptance of vaping by the British public health establishment. Both Public Health England and the Royal College of Physicians have issued reports in the last two years encouraging smokers to switch to vaping.
“The UK government has created an environment which enables consumers to be informed about the products, have access to them and allows manufacturers to innovate and provide quality vaping products,” said Kingsley Wheaton of BAT. “With many UK experts in Science and Health endorsing e-cigarettes as a safer alternative to smoking, up-take of e-cigarettes can only be a good thing”