Vape store struggling with sales and layoffs due to WA flavored vaping ban
Some vape stores aren’t sure how long they can keep their doors open, a week into Washington’s four-month ban on flavored vaping products.
Cristian Rosas is with S.S.Y.E. Juice, a vapor wholesaler that operates five vaping shops across western Washington. He says sales have dropped 80 percent at each of their locations. Before the ban, their slowest location would sell about $1,200 in vaping products. That’s now down to $200 to $300 a day.
“And wholesale is now like zero because no one’s buying juice,” he added. Rosas worries they’ll have to dump tens of thousands of dollars in vaping liquid, which is set to expire in the coming weeks.
Health officials have identified 13 deaths nationwide as a result of vape-related illnesses. In total, federal health officials have identified over 805 cases of illness across 46 states and the Virgin Islands.
Washington’s State Board of Health passed a ban on all flavored vaping products last week. The ban on flavored vaping products is temporary and will last 120 days.
If the ban continues, Rosas says he’s going to have to lay off his staff and close his doors.
“We’re trying to keep everyone, we’re trying to be loyal to them because they’ve been loyal to us, but if this doesn’t change then we would have to let them go. As of now, we’re just trying to weather it out,” he said.
“It’s very scary to see this go away because it definitely helps a lot of people … It’s people’s livelihood that they’re messing with. Some of these co-ops have their whole lives invested in this and not only for monetary reasons, but just wanting to help people quit smoking.”