While millions of people remain hooked on traditional cigarettes, the tobacco industry knows that its future is increasingly becoming smokeless. Just yesterday, the CEO of Philip Morris admitted that his company could someday cease making cigarettes altogether. So it makes sense that some tobacco giants are now opening stores to promote and teach people how to use these new products.
No, the vaping stores you see on every corner here in the U.S. aren’t secretly run by the giant tobacco companies: so far, the new stores have only opened abroad. British American Tobacco opened its first store in Milan, Italy, today, where it will sell the new line of vaporizers under the company’s Vype brand, teaching customers how to use them.
The company’s CEO notes that the products might take a while to really catch on with consumers, comparing the inhalation of flavored vapor and (optionally) nicotine with non-alcoholic beer.
Philip Morris has a similar store in London, which serves a similar purpose of getting word out about products while reaching lots of current smokers who can share the products with others.