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Disposable Vapes

Great product or environmental problem?

In March 2022 we looked at the alternative smoking category and saw how the Alternative Smoking market had grown. From March 2021 to February 2022, vapes went from 0.5% to 2.4% of the share of total sales. We can see this growth has continued, driven by Disposable Vapes. Customers like disposables for the convenience and lack of initial outlay which can be expensive in other systems – in addition, the customer doesn’t have to learn about the product to use it – which makes it convenient for both end user and retailer.

Disposable vaping now accounts for around 85% of total Alternative Smoking spend. The average units sold per store has more than doubled compared to a year ago.

Alternative Smoking - Share of total sales
Disposable Vapes - Average Units Sold per Store

In 2022 there were almost 2,000 new barcodes seen. The top 5 biggest selling brands account for 96% of Total Disposable Vape sales.

Elf dominates this market with almost three quarters of sales but recent press reports relating to illegally filled bars, leading to Booker telling stores to remove the products from sale, could severely impact this brand and this market. Find out more about Elf bars overfilling here.

The Office for National Statistics says that approximately 3 million people currently use an e-cigarette, 5.7% of over 16s, up from 3.7% in 2014. Material Focus (a not-for-profit organisation focussed on recycling of electronic products) says there are 14 million disposable vapes purchased every month.

There have been reports that Scotland are looking to ban disposable vape products. Each bar contains a battery and so they should be disposed of at a battery recycling point. Zero waste Scotland are concerned about excessive plastic packaging and its effect on the environment, littering and the risk of fires in waste facilities.

Stores who sell or supply 32kg of batteries per year (1 pack of 4 AA batteries per day equals 32kg/year) must legally have a small battery collection point at all premises from where batteries are supplied. Disposable vapes should be brought to collection points for disposal. You can find out more from

Click here to read the Selling Vapes Responsibly Guide from the ACS.

Disposable Vapes: Bestsellers
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