In Ontario the first anti-smoking legislation was introduced in 1994 and further restrictions were introduced in 2006 with the Smoke-Free Ontario Act. This law helps prevent young people from starting to smoke, helps people who smoke quit, and protects everyone from the harms associated with secondhand smoke. In 2018 the smoking rates in Ontario were the lowest they had ever been, which was good news for everyone except the tobacco industry that makes and sells commercial tobacco products. With sales and profits dropping, the industry needed to re-invent itself and its products. So when e-cigarettes came on the market, big tobacco took notice.
E-cigarettes were a perfect product for the tobacco industry. In an age where everyone is drawn to technology, adding an electronic component to cigarettes seemed like a natural evolution. By eliminating the need to burn tobacco, vapes could be marketed as a “safer” alternative to smoking. E-liquid and cartridges/pods come in thousands of flavours making them very appealing to users of all ages, and being a new product on the market, they were not restricted by many of the laws that dictate cigarette use, sales and marketing. But best of all, e-cigarettes accomplished the one thing that the tobacco industry has spent decades perfecting – getting and keeping people addicted to nicotine.
Before long vape manufacturers such as Juul were selling portions of their companies to big tobacco and the industry was also coming out with its own brands such as Logic and Vype.