Limits...
A Pilot Study of Retail ‘ Vape Shops ’ in the San Francisco Bay Area

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Introduction: The use of electronic cigarettes or vape devices is increasing, and products are evolving rapidly. This study assessed retail vape shops in the San Francisco Bay Area to describe store characteristics, products offered, advertisements and health claims, as well as employees’ perceptions of their customers’ demographics, and practices to support smoking cessation.

Methods: We conducted store audits of shops that exclusively sell vape devices with physical addresses in San Francisco and Alameda counties (n=23, response rate 72%) and interviewed vape shop owners/employees.

Results: While all stores carried second and third generation vape devices, 83% of stores did not carry first generation devices. Employees estimated the majority of their customers bought devices for smoking cessation or to replace tobacco, and a small minority purchased for first-time recreational use. Employees most frequently recommended dosing nicotine based on usual cigarette consumption, adjusting doses based on “throat hit” or cravings, use of a second or third generation e-cigarette, and encouraged customers to experiment and customize to “whatever works for you” as smoking cessation advice.

Conclusions: Vape shops report a significant number of their customers are interested in smoking cessation, and employees are giving smoking cessation advice. A subpopulation of customers includes some nicotine novices. Studies of vape shops should include both observations and interviews with employees in order to detect important informal practices that may differ from posted signs or printed advertising. These practices include cessation counseling, product claims, and custom discount prices or bargaining.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Frequency of types of smoking cessation advice given to customers, as reported by employees of San Francisco/Bay Area vape shops.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5382868&req=5

Figure 4: Frequency of types of smoking cessation advice given to customers, as reported by employees of San Francisco/Bay Area vape shops.

Mentions: All employees interviewed mentioned being asked for or giving smoking cessation advice to customers, although none mentioned training in cessation counseling, and two explicitly mentioned the lack of evidence-based recommendations for using e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation aid. Vape shop employees provided examples of cessation advice they would give in a fictional scenario: “What if I’m a 50 year old 2 pack-a-day smoker? What is your best advice for me to quit?” All 23 store employees interviewed answered this question with some type of cessation advice (Figure 4) and the majority (83%, 19/23) stipulated tailoring a cessation plan to an individual customer or allowing the customers to experiment and tailor for themselves. Employees frequently emphasized that there was no right way to quit and customers should experiment and customize the experience (“whatever works for you”, 30%, 7/23), as the outcome was more important than the method.


A Pilot Study of Retail ‘ Vape Shops ’ in the San Francisco Bay Area
Frequency of types of smoking cessation advice given to customers, as reported by employees of San Francisco/Bay Area vape shops.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5382868&req=5

Figure 4: Frequency of types of smoking cessation advice given to customers, as reported by employees of San Francisco/Bay Area vape shops.
Mentions: All employees interviewed mentioned being asked for or giving smoking cessation advice to customers, although none mentioned training in cessation counseling, and two explicitly mentioned the lack of evidence-based recommendations for using e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation aid. Vape shop employees provided examples of cessation advice they would give in a fictional scenario: “What if I’m a 50 year old 2 pack-a-day smoker? What is your best advice for me to quit?” All 23 store employees interviewed answered this question with some type of cessation advice (Figure 4) and the majority (83%, 19/23) stipulated tailoring a cessation plan to an individual customer or allowing the customers to experiment and tailor for themselves. Employees frequently emphasized that there was no right way to quit and customers should experiment and customize the experience (“whatever works for you”, 30%, 7/23), as the outcome was more important than the method.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Introduction: The use of electronic cigarettes or vape devices is increasing, and products are evolving rapidly. This study assessed retail vape shops in the San Francisco Bay Area to describe store characteristics, products offered, advertisements and health claims, as well as employees’ perceptions of their customers’ demographics, and practices to support smoking cessation.

Methods: We conducted store audits of shops that exclusively sell vape devices with physical addresses in San Francisco and Alameda counties (n=23, response rate 72%) and interviewed vape shop owners/employees.

Results: While all stores carried second and third generation vape devices, 83% of stores did not carry first generation devices. Employees estimated the majority of their customers bought devices for smoking cessation or to replace tobacco, and a small minority purchased for first-time recreational use. Employees most frequently recommended dosing nicotine based on usual cigarette consumption, adjusting doses based on “throat hit” or cravings, use of a second or third generation e-cigarette, and encouraged customers to experiment and customize to “whatever works for you” as smoking cessation advice.

Conclusions: Vape shops report a significant number of their customers are interested in smoking cessation, and employees are giving smoking cessation advice. A subpopulation of customers includes some nicotine novices. Studies of vape shops should include both observations and interviews with employees in order to detect important informal practices that may differ from posted signs or printed advertising. These practices include cessation counseling, product claims, and custom discount prices or bargaining.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus