Cigarette sales in Nova Scotia increasing: Atlantic Convenience Stores Association

By Matt Brand

Flavoured vaping products were banned in Nova Scotia back on April 1st.

But a recent survey shows more people may be going back to regular, combustible cigarettes.

The poll by Abacus Data shows about 29 percent of the vaping population in Nova Scotia is at risk of switching to cigarettes.

But according to Mike Hammoud, president of the Atlantic Convenience Stores Association, the switch from e-cigarettes to original cigarettes has already begun.

Hammoud tells The Sheldon MacLeod Show, cigarette sales in the province have been on a steady decline for about a decade.

But he’s hearing from retailers who say they’ve seen a sharp increase in sales since the pandemic began.

“This is something that has kind of come out of nowhere for us on the scale of seeing such an increase in cigarettes,” he says. 

Hammoud says he believes the reason for increased cigarette sales is twofold: the first being the ban on flavoured vape products, the other being an increased presence at the border leading to a decrease in the sale of black-market tobacco.

According to Hammoud, he wants to talk to government officials to discuss the future of flavoured vaping products, and what the end goal should be.

“We feel that the current restrictions may have gone too far, and smoking reduction cessation for adults may have been that unintended consequence,” he says.

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