By Paul Fitzgerald
The electronic cigarette (e-cig) business is expected to be a $4 Billion industry in a few years’ time and for good reason: they are a logical next step in tobacco harm reduction, according to the Lung Association, leading doctors, and anti-tobacco activists.
Even Shoppers Drug Mart has now entered the e-cig game, and starting this week in Ottawa, ON, they will unveil a popular e-cig for its customers. Called Dune Cigs, now the rave from coast to coast in Canada, they come in a variety of ‘nicotine-free’ flavours.
Here is a listing of the Shoppers Drug Mart stores in Ottawa that are now offering Dune Cigs for thousands of customers: 2515 Bank Street; 111 Albert St (Unit 110); 1180 Walkley Road; and in Nepean at 3151 Strandherd Drive.
Chris Sherman, VP of Sales for Dune Cigs, says that tobacco cigarettes are known to contain 3,500 different chemicals, which are carcinogenic. “Dune products contain glycerol, flavouring and water. It allows [users] to feel like they are smoking… but they’re not taking in any of the harmful chemicals.”
Some research recently conducted out of Canada, the USA and UK, shows that e-cigs without nicotine may help some smokers kick the habit for good.
Melodie Tilson, policy director with the Non-Smokers’ Rights Association just appeared on The Current (CBC Radio), suggesting that there is virtually no chance an e-cig could be as harmful as a tobacco cigarette to the individual using the product.
Michael Siegel, a physician and professor at the Boston University School of Public Health, says e-cigs “could literally save thousands of lives.”
Jennifer Miller, vice-president of health promotion with the Lung Association states, “I think we owe it to millions of Canadians who are addicted to tobacco products. If there’s a product out there that may have some merit to bring down those numbers, we have to look at it.”
It is well documented that the existing smoking cessation products currently on the market only have a 7% success rate. Smokers are addicted to three different states: nicotine; habitual hand to mouth movement; and social enjoyment.
Dune retail partners also consist of: Wal-Mart, Target, Shoppers Drug Mart, Rexall, Loblaws/Superstore, Co-op, Save on Foods, Canadian tire, Mac’s, Lawtons, Value Drug, Drug trading, Shell Canada, Gateway, Pioneer, Giant Tiger and more.
Twenty percent of the Canadian population smoke tobacco cigarettes, 50% of that 20% will die from tobacco related illness, according to Health Canada and the Canadian Lung Association.
Dune was formed because there was a need to address a gap when it comes to smoking cessation and tobacco use. The company’s goal for the Canadian market is classified as “tobacco harm reduction” (reducing the potential harm to an individual smoking a cigarette essentially, every cigarette less that they have, is less harm that could impact their life).
Sherman adds, “What Dune Cigs provide is more than unique; it allows the user to fulfill the missing habitual act of holding something tactile in their hand, inhaling and exhaling a harmless, and odorless water vapor. Smokers therefore complete their psychological acts of addiction in a tradition they are used to.”
Dune Cigs are now a huge leader in the e-cig industry in Canada. Each week their growth in sales continue to soar.
Dune may also bring on a new expression for e-cig users: So how do you vape?