WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Thousands of people are expected to attend the VapeMania e-cigarette convention at the Benton Convention Center this weekend.
More than 80 vendors from across the country are participating in the convention, which celebrates the growing e-cigarette industry and culture.
“More people are quitting smoking, and that`s the most important thing. At least that`s why I did it. The more people that are joining, that says to me that it`s working,” said Chris Winfrey with the Vape Association.
Winfrey is in good company. Melissa Salva says vaping helped her quit smoking after 40 years.
“It`s emotional, because my kids watched me smoke all their lives,” says Salva.
Vaping changed her husband’s life as well, because he has asthma.
“Here I am, vape going on all around me, and I`m not running for the door asking you to take me to a hospital right now,” said Ron Salva.
Stories, like the Salva’s, are why so many e-cigarette businesses are thriving.
“We have done nothing but grow to the point where we`re able to open our second location,” said Nikki Hogan, owner of Lucky Duck Vapors in Kernersville.
However, agencies like the World Health Organization are urging governments to impose regulations on the industry, because they say there is no proof vaping is healthier than smoking.
The organization is calling for restrictions on things like marketing, vaping indoors and selling to minors.
“When cell phones first came out, remember they told everyone we were going to get brain cancer. We obviously know that`s not the truth. We actually do have science behind vaping. There is actual science. It`s not an ‘I don`t know’ thing. We absolutely know,” said Winfrey.
VapeMania will be on Aug. 29-31 at the Benton Convention Center, from noon-2 AM.