SmokeStik, the UK’s leading brand of electronic cigarette, has welcomed the news that a leading anti-smoking group has commissioned research into their use.
A spokeswoman for the anti-smoking group ASH yesterday confirmed that they had commissioned market research into the way the electronic cigarettes are perceived by the public.
It’s thought the move could lead to ASH endorsing SmokeStik’s as a less harmful alternative to tobacco smoking.
A recent arrival from the US, SmokeStik’s are battery operated devices which give smokers a nicotine hit without the need for harmful tobacco. In America they have been eagerly adopted by big name celebrities such as Leonardo DiCaprio.
The research, which ASH will publish in the coming months, will provide the most in depth picture yet into how SmokeStiks are perceived in the UK.
SmokeStiks are not restricted by the ban on smoking in public places and can be enjoyed in bars and restaurants – a factor which has led to many smokers ditching tobacco in their favour over the cold winter months.
They release only an odourless vapour and are believed to be relatively healthy compared to traditional tobacco based cigarettes.
Since the smoking ban came into force in 2007 smokers have been forced out of public places and many have managed to kick the smoking habit altogether. But an increasing number have continued to enjoy nicotine in bars, restaurants, cinemas and even on airplanes by using a SmokeStik.
The ASH spokeswoman said: “We are still developing our policy on e-cigs and this research is a part of that process. There are likely to be significant health gains as people move from traditional cigarettes to e-cigs.
“Our position is one of supporting harm reduction. We recognise that a significant number of people want to carry on using nicotine and we believe there may be a place for a system which provides for the pure delivery of nicotine without tobacco.
“The purpose of the research we have commissioned is to discover exactly how the public currently perceive e-cigs and how acceptable they are going to be to smokers. The emergence of these products is certainly an interesting development and it will be interesting to see if they catch on over the next few years.”
A spokesman for SmokeStik confirmed the product was selling well since its launch in Selfridges last year. Sales on the company’s website www.SmokeStikUK.com are also growing.
He said: “We are delighted to hear that ASH are taking a serious look at the benefits our products offer to smokers.
“SmokeStiks offer a healthier and more socially acceptable alternative to tobacco based cigarettes. Why shiver outside when you can spark up a SmokeStik at the bar?”
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