Smoking Cessation and E-cigarettes - UK - February 2014
“The rise in popularity of E-cigarettes has hampered growth in the value of the smoking cessation market, which saw modest growth of less than 2% in 2013. Although E-cigarettes are largely marketed as an alternative to smoking, smokers have been using them to cut down or quit smoking. Changes in legislation, coming into effect in 2016, will see E-cigarettes classified as medicines. This will result in their availability on prescription for the first time, which may hamper the market. Additionally, with the level of nicotine in E-cigarettes also restricted, the usage experience for smokers is likely to change, and may result in low usage satisfaction.”
– Roshida Khanom, Senior Personal Care Analyst
Some questions answered in this report include:
- How have E-cigarettes impacted the smoking cessation market?
- What are the most successful smoking cessation methods?
- Are E-cigarettes helping people quit smoking?
- How will the reclassification of E-cigarettes in 2016 impact the market?
The smoking cessation market has enjoyed strong growth historically, with around 6-10% growth annually from 2009-12. However, in 2013 the market saw modest growth (of less than 2%) due to the growing popularity of E-cigarettes. In 2013, tobacco manufacturers entered the E-cigarette market and products became more widely available, taking interest away from existing smoking cessation products such as nicotine replacement gum, tablets and patches. Where prior to 2012/13, E-cigarettes were mainly available on the internet only, in the last 12-18 months the market has extended into retail stores including supermarkets. Although largely marketed as an alternative to smoking, E-cigarettes are the second most popular smoking cessation method, currently used by 46% of smokers/ex-smokers to quit smoking. Additionally, they are rated as being as effective as non-prescription nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) in helping smokers kick the habit.
Although smoking is on the decline, with the proportion of smokers falling from 28% of adults in 1998 to 20% in 2010, the growth of the smoking cessation market suggests that people are still trying to stop smoking. Health, money and appearance concerns are the biggest motivators for quitting. Appearance is a bigger motivator for young people and women, offering opportunities for brands to target communication to these groups.
The future is likely to see small growth in the smoking cessation market as E-cigarettes continue to remain popular. With the changing classification of E-cigarettes to medicine in 2016, the market for E-cigarettes could be hampered as people get access to products on prescription and the level of nicotine is restricted. However, licensing brings with it robust testing and data to support claims and open opportunities for product communication for brands.
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