Following the government’s announcement that non-essential stores are allowed to reopen on 15 June, the UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) has said it is ‘immensely proud’ of vape shops for the responsible approach they have taken to the lockdown.

The 10-week lockdown forced many businesses to adapt their trading models overnight, and the UKVIA explained that as a result, vape stores will be well placed to bounce back.

Coronavirus: What comes next for independent retailers?

John Dunne, director at UKVIA, said the response from the industry to the challenging conditions has been both ‘staggering and exemplary’, despite some of its members being downhearted that they were not seen as essential retail stores as like in other countries, such as France.

“I know that our members that make up a large share of the vaping market have been working around the clock to provide online and home delivery services to the 3.2 million vapers across the country.

“As an industry association, we have been engaging with the government to ensure that vape shops could open as soon as possible as the lockdown was gradually lifted.

Online vape sales soar amid specialist store closures

“All our retail members have still been ‘open for business’ since the lockdown begun and have introduced social distancing measures that go well beyond the government guidance. This should give vapers confidence when going to their local stores.

“Our members, together with the industry as a whole, will be delighted that shops will be able to reopen from the 15 June as it will enable them to give the critical support to their customers, and be a boost to the whole supply chain.”

3 reasons why convenience retailers are the new go-to for vapers

However, what will become of vape stores is still to be determined. In an analysis by Vape Retailer looking at the future of the supply chain, suppliers, including Aquavape, voiced concerned about the longevity of vape stores.

Vape Retailer

The leading vape magazine for the convenience sector, Vape Retailer’s mission is to demystify the vaping category through industry-leading insight and actionable advice.