MMWR E-cigarette Unit Sales, by Product and Flavor Type—United States, 2014–2020

September 18, 2020 / Vol. 69 / 37

MMWR Introduction

In this study, the CDC Foundation, Truth Initiative, and CDC analyzed retail scanner data during September 14, 2014–May 17, 2020 from Information Resources, Inc. to assess trends in unit sales of e-cigarettes in the U.S. by product and flavor type. During September 2014–May 2020, e-cigarette sales increased by 122.2%. Sales of prefilled cartridges increased during September 2014–August 2019; since then, sales of disposable products have increased. Prefilled mint cartridge e-cigarette sales increased from September 2014 to August 2019, then decreased, as menthol sales increased during August 2019–May 2020.

Continued monitoring of e-cigarette sales and use is critical to inform strategies to minimize risks. As part of a comprehensive approach, such strategies could include those that address youth-appealing product innovations and flavors.

MMWR Highlights

Total Sales, September 14, 2014–May 17, 2020

  • Total sales increased by 122.2%, from 7.7 million to 17.1 million units per 4-week interval.

Average Interval Percentage Change of Total Sales by Product Type, September 14, 2014–May 17, 2020

  • Pre-filled cartridges
    • September 2014–August 2019          1.0 (0.8 to 1.2)
    • August 2019–May 2020                    −1.3 (−1.9 to −0.6)
  • Disposable devices
    • September 2014–August 2019        −2.4 (−3.1 to −1.6)
    • August 2019–May 2020                      7.5 (4.6 to 10.5)
  • E-liquid
    • September 2014–August 2019        −5.8 (−7.0 to −4.5)

 

Average Interval Percentage Change of Total Sales by Flavor Type, September 14, 2014–May 17, 2020

  • Mint
    • September 2014–August 2019          10.5 (8.1 to 13.0)
    • August 2019–May 2020                    −28.3 (−36.9 to −18.5)
  • Menthol
    • August 2019–May 2020                      18.9 (12.5 to 25.7)
  • Tobacco
    • August 2019–May 2020                        4.6 (2.7 to 6.6)
  • All other flavors
    • September 2014–October 2018          2.0 (1.3 to 2.7)
    • October 2018–May 2020                    −5.9 (−8.3 to −3.4)

Average Interval Percentage Change of Prefilled Cartridges by Flavor Type, September 14, 2014–May 17, 2020

  • Mint
    • September 2014–August 2019          14.1 (8.5 to 20.1)
    • August 2019–May 2020                    −42.3 (−54.6 to −26.7)
  • Menthol
    • August 2019–May 2020                       22.3 (14.9 to 30.1)
  • Tobacco
    • August 2019–May 2020                         6.1 (3.6 to 8.7)
  • All other flavors
    • September 2014–October 2018           3.3 (2.3 to 4.2)
    • October 2018–May 2020                   −18.1 (−28.6 to −6.0)

 

Average Interval Percentage Change of Disposable Sales, by Flavor Type, September 14, 2014–May 17, 2020

  • Mint
    • September 2014–May 2020                 7.4 (4.7 to 10.1)
  • Menthol
    • September 2014–May 2020               −1.4 (−2.5 to −0.3)
  • Tobacco
    • September 2014–May 2020                −1.5 (−2.1 to −0.9)
  • All other flavors
    • September 2014–May 2020                  1.6 (1.3 to 1.9)

 

Average Interval Percentage of E-Liquid Sales, by Flavor Type, September 14, 2014–May 17, 2020

  • Mint
    • September 2014–May 2020                 −3.5 (−4.9 to −2.2)
  • Menthol
    • September 2014–May 2020                   NA
  • Tobacco
    • September 2014–May 2020                 −4.5 (−6.7 to −2.3)
  • All other flavors
    • September 2014–May 2020                 −4.2 (−5.9 to −2.4)