A World Without Tobacco


To lock the past in slow motion against the future; that’s all regulation really is. A way to introduce a new product without completely shattering the old. At least not until the time is right, of course.

Deep down inside the chambers of my heart, I believe the FDA knows vaping is the future and smoking the past. I could understand the perpetual criticism and skepticism, not to mention the continued rhetoric intent on suppressing the growth of the e-cigarette industry if the science-backed data advocating the benefits weren’t available. But data is available. Readily available in fact.

The facts are also readily available concerning tobacco. In particular, the dangers associated with its use.

You would be hard-pressed to find information advocating the use of cigarettes. There’s no debating tobacco use causes severe bodily harm and in many cases death. Currently, about 5 million people die each year around the world from tobacco-related illnesses. According to the CDC, cigarette smoking is responsible for 480,000 deaths per year in the United States, including more than 41,000 deaths resulting from secondhand smoke exposure. The total economic cost of smoking is said to be more than $300 billion a year.

According to a British American Tobacco article on the global cigarette market; the size of the global tobacco market is valued at around $700 billion U.S. dollars, of which the global cigarette market is valued at around $700 billion U.S. dollars. A pretty large chunk of the tobacco industry profit margin is attributed to the desire for cigarettes.

Bis Research (Business Intelligence and Strategy Research), is a global market intelligence and advisory firm who recently published a market intelligence report, “Global E cigarette and Vape market 2017-2025” which valued the current global e-cigarette market at $8 billion U.S. dollars and estimates that by 2025 the industry will carry a value of $46.9 billion U.S. dollars.

If an estimated one billion adults smoked 5,600 billion cigarettes a year, generating profits in the neighborhood of many foreign country’s gross domestic products, would you completely shut the doors in order to open new doors for an industry with a healthier choice although not nearly worth as much? Probably not. More not than probably. At least not just yet. Not until the new product showed the potential to generate similarly large profits.

“The most common pattern in regulation is to lock the past in slow motion against the future,” said LinkedIn Co-Founder Reid Hoffman on what resolutions Silicon Valley should make in 2018.

And while Big tobacco and Silicon Valley differ vastly, Hoffman’s definition on regulation in regards to the tech industry is just as applicable to both the tobacco and e-cigarette industries.

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Andrew Figgs

Photography Major from Western Washington University . I joined MBV back in December 2014 and am happy to be working in an industry focused on helping others.

  • Carl says:

    Big tobacco will spend anything to derail vaping. They know cigs are over.

  • Ronin says:

    Hopefully ecigs can take down big tobacco!

  • Celeste says:

    i wish i never touched a cigarette thanks mdv

  • Kristin says:

    I too wish I never started smoking. I still crave them and occasionally smoke them. Even though I vape.

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