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« Date for your diary | Main | Smoking or vaping, it's your choice »
Wednesday
Feb062019

Making sense of statistics

According to a survey of 2,219 UK adults by analysts Mintel, ‘one in five Britons vape, up from 17 per cent in 2016.’

One in five? I’m confused.

According to the most recent ONS figures:

In 2017, 5.5% of people reported that they currently used an e-cigarette (vaped): this equates to approximately 2.8 million vapers in the population of Great Britain.

More recently still a YouGov survey of over 12,000 adults for ASH estimated that 3.2 million adults in Britain (approximately 8%) are using e-cigarettes.

Mintel also found that ‘almost one in three 18-24 year olds’ now vape. If it's true that ‘only one per cent of non-smokers vape’ it means that almost one in three 18-24 year olds must have been smokers before they started vaping.

According to the ONS, however, only 17.8 per cent of 18-24 year olds were smokers in 2017 (down from 25.7 per cent in 2011).

The conundrum is, who to believe? An 'award-winning provider of market research', a government agency or a lobby group?

Help!

See ‘Vaping seen as increasingly "fashionable" as one in three millennials take up smoking substitute’ (Telegraph).

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Reader Comments (3)

I would believe the ONS.
It's a shame the ONS does not perform a yearly survey of diseases according to smoking status, as this would yield accurate estimates unlike the non-randomised samples beloved by the tobacco control industry. Such as the CPSII study where members of an anti-smoking organisation recruited people they know into the study and in doing so failed to eliminate selection bias. This study is used to this day to estimate the proportion of diseases "caused by smoking" around the world - what a disgrace. Or the British doctors study where they, the doctors, enrolled themselves and then helped decide the outcome of the study. Or other studies where people are enrolled in a clinical setting and so excluding healthy people from the results.
I once read a report by the ONS that calculated the proportion of diseases that could, according to the ONS, be "plausibly attributable to smoking" after it received the tobacco control make over the words became "caused by smoking".

I would believe the ONS over YouGov/Kellner/ASH all day long.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019 at 11:40 | Unregistered CommenterFredrik Eich

I wouldn't believe any of them anymore - but if it shows smokers can be forced to vapng, the swivel eyed lobbyists and their pals in big vape will swallow the lot without question.

I just wish they would all leave us alone.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019 at 13:02 | Unregistered Commenterpat nurse

Maybe Mintel did their research in a vape shop

Wednesday, February 6, 2019 at 13:32 | Unregistered CommenterBucko

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