Alt New Zealand and Vapo constitutes the largest vape company in New Zealand. It says its R18 online sales for vape starter kits and entry-level devices has grown by a staggering 30%. Co-owner of Alt New Zealand and Vapo, Ben Pryor, says the company has taken a significant hit with its 11 Vapo stores closed nationwide. All product purchases are now through Alt and Vapo’s online stores or supermarkets, service stations, and convenience retailers.
“We’ve really noticed a big increase in our Alt and Vapo Haiz starter kit sales. Our call centre is reporting that many smokers are using this time to quit tobacco so are seeking advice and turning to considerably safer and cost-effective vape products more than ever,” says Mr Pryor.
Sales of Alt and Vapo Haiz starter kits, including pens, pods and e-liquids, are up 30% with those ordering online advised that ‘some delays may occur due to an influx of orders.’
“There are a few things at play here. People are quitting cigarettes because of their sheer cost and the increasing pressure many household budgets are now under. At the same time, the threat of Covid-19 has made many smokers more cognisant of their respiratory health and smoking’s second-hand effects on others in their bubble,” he says.
Mr Pryor says with the Health Select Committee due to report back to Parliament by 2 June on the Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products (Vaping) Amendment Bill, MPs need to consider the important role vaping plays in reducing smoking rates – and none more so than during the lockdown period.
“About 5,000 Kiwis die from smoking-related illnesses every year. Whereas not one New Zealander has ever died from a vaping-related death, let alone a reported hospitalisation. Without doubt, Covid-19 is providing Kiwis a unique opportunity to quit smoking, with many now turning to vaping for their nicotine fix.”
“This is a timely reminder that any new vaping regulations must continue to encourage and enable smokers to make that switch,” says Ben Pryor.