The Gateway Effect and Effect of Pricing

In a report titled: “The Effect of Price on Youth Cigarette and E-cigarette Use”, researchers Michael Pesko ,of Georgia State University, and Casey Warman ,of Dalhousie University, looked into the links between e-cigs and cigarette use of young adults, using an average pricing range for each product.

In an opening statement, the duo state that ” E-cig usage is highly associated with the use of other tobacco products among youth and young adults.” In saying this, it gives people the image that vaping, which is hailed as a go to method to quit smoking, as being a link to a gateway tool to start smoking.

However on a brighter note, the continue to include some more positive facts in relation to the safety of vaping. They quote from the Goniewicz at al study, which shows that toxin levels withing ecigs are “9-450 times lower than normal cigarettes”. Also quoting from the Vicusi study, they state that “estimated lung cancer and mortality risks are between 100-1,000 times lover for vaping over smoking”.

After quoting these studies, the duo looked for a price-related gateway effect. They carried out tests to try and find proof of e-cigs being a start towards smoking, by comparing price increases of e-cigs against cigarettes. They went on to announce that they had found a report that states: “a documentation that shows a strong correlation between current e-cig use and later cigarette use”, yet no such reliable evidence to coincide with this has been published. Failing to find such evidence they go on to quote Jessica Barrington-Trimis, who was already cited for her made-up studies, and non factual points that hailed from the Centre for Disease Control.

It is a pretty obvious fact that if something is more expensive, fewer people will buy or want to use them. A term to describe this is known as the “Price Elasticity of Demand. Pesko and Wurman were basing there findings on the 2015 National Youth Tobacco Survey, a survey that is at the base of many many failed studies.

From this they were not providing actual facts just estimations, such as : “We estimate separate price responsiveness for these products since these products may be used along different stages of the e-cigarette initiation trajectory, with more established e-cigarette users likely using refill cartridges that required the previous investment of a rechargeable vaping device.”

Digging through the contents of the report, the conclusion states “We find evidence that higher e-cigarette cartridge prices reduce the probability of youth currently using e-cigarettes.” This on its own could have been said from the get go.

Both Pesko and Warman say in there findings: “Higher ecig prices drive up smoking rates, especially in males, and that on a population level, it appears that youth are more likely to use e-cigarettes instead of cigarettes rather than use cigarettes because of e-cigarettes. This suggests that e-cigarettes on the whole are exit ramps rather than gateways into smoking.”

Cutting out all the nonsense in between this report, Vaping is a one way ticket to quitting smoking and to imply taxes would raise the unlikelihood of people wanting to go down this route.