US cigarette sales declined by nearly 10 per cent in March this year, according to data by global analytics company, Nielsen.
Sales fell 8.8 per cent in the month leading to March 23, following an 8 per cent decline in February and a 5.3 per cent overall decrease in the year 2018.
The Financial Times (FT) reported that cigarette packet price-increases “partly offset” this impact on revenues, though the influence of e-cigarette popularity cannot be ignored.
David Sweanor, a public health and harm reduction advocate, said:
“There is a pronounced acceleration in the decline of cigarette sales over the past year, and the increase in e-cig sales is a mirror image of the decline in cigarette sales.”
Though the data released by Nielsen only tracks sales in a minority of the US stores that sell cigarettes, analysts have said that these results are a “meaningful signal of a step-change in cigarette sales.”
The US has the largest e-cigarette market in the world, with JUUL now accounting for 70 percent of the country’s market.
JUUL chief executive, Kevin Burns, said:
“These changes in the US tobacco market are a testament to the success of Juul products in switching adult smokers off combustible cigarettes.”