When a new business opens in town, it can be very exciting meeting the new owners and seeing what type of products are being offered.
When three new businesses of the same type are opening within a month, it is inevitable people perk up their ears to learn what the deal is.
Such is the case this past month as Cheney has become host to three new shops specializing in vapor and e-cigarettes.
There is a significant buzz surrounding the act of “vaping” and people are on all sides of the opinion spectrum.
Using e-cigarettes can be an alternative to traditional tobacco cigarettes and is considered by some to be even be healthier, or at least less damaging.
Joey Blodgett, manager at Sublime Vapor inside the Piece of Mind Coffeehouse, says he has had customers that have been told by their doctors to quit smoking.
E-cigarettes allow for the sensation of smoking and inhalation of nicotine or other flavored vapors without actually creating smoke. Instead the clouds that are becoming vaporized liquid, not nicotine smoke.
Nicotine can be found in a multitude of sources, “Ours comes from tomatoes, potatoes and other vegetables,” Blodgett said.
Sublime has two other footholds in the Inland Northwest, including their flagship store in Spokane and another in Grants Pass, Ore.
Blodgett said their customers come from Sandpoint and Seattle for the “hardcore customer service” and considers their store the “only pro-shop” for e-cigarettes and juice in the area.
Juices are the actual liquid that gets vaporized by the battery-operated mod, of which Sublime offers over 300 flavors.
“Our goal is to bring a different vaping experience, to get it to a new level,” Mike Thompson, owner of Sublime Vapor, said.
Currently there are no FDA regulations for the use of e-cigarettes. The FDA can only regulate cigarettes, smoke-less tobacco, and hand-rolled cigarettes.
The most concerning part of the budding industry, is there is no current oversight for the manufacturing.
Darcy and Robert Sbarbaro, Cheney locals and owners of E-Vapor Scents, are not concerned about any forth-coming FDA regulations but rather on the taxing of sales.
“It’s bound to happen. I am surprised it has taken this long,” Darcy said of the recent calls for FDA intervention.
Even without the regulations Darcy and her husband are excited to be a part of this rapidly growing industry.
“The vapor world is just so much better than the smoker world,” Darcy said.
Kelsey Lavelle can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.