LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - A group of local vape stores is raising its age limit to 19 to combat underage vaping.
The Fog Foundry has locations in Lafayette, Frankfort, and Kokomo. All three sites put up signs on July 26 stating they no longer cater to 18-year-olds. The FDA reported 3.62 million current users of vapes among middle and high school students.
Fog Foundry co-owner Chad Myers said after he found out there may be a chance that 18-year-olds are supplying to minors, he knew his company needed to make a change.
"There's a large demographic of 18-year-olds that are still in high school and it's really easy for them to walk in here, leave here and then the next day go to school and sell that device to someone else," said Myers.
Myers has been operating the three locations for four years.
"Our goal when starting this business was to help people find a nicotine alternative," said Myers.
Myers and co-owner Shawn Cuzzort decided to raise their age limit to 19, hoping it would combat underage vaping.
"Why pick up a habit you don't have? If you're not addicted to nicotine, why pick that nicotine habit up," said Myers.
Regular customer Dylan Harber said he believes the younger crowd thinks of it as a way to fit in.
"It’s just not something that should be fun or cool, itʼs a device used to quit smoking," said Harber. "There's always going to be those few that get their hands on it and that is how the system is, the same way for alcohol and tobacco."
Myers said he believes the most popular are "salt nic" devices because they are easy to conceal and appear to be a jump drive.
"I hear of kids doing it in the restroom, the hallways, and to me, that's a problem," stated Myers. “We want to make sure that we are helping to fight teen vaping as much as possible,"
Myers estimates under 5-percent of the store's customers were 18-year-olds.