The days of lighting up a cigarette could soon be over
An electronic cigarette designed in South Cheshire is to be sold across the country.
Sandbach-based 10 Motives Limited has developed a disposable 'e-cigarette' to make the habit more socially acceptable and safer.
They claim the cigarettes contain none of the harmful toxins associated with normal tobacco-based products.
They've been successfully trialled in Tesco stores in the North-West and now go on sale in all Tesco's UK stores.
The electronic cigarette looks very similar to a normal cigarette and acts as an alternative to smoked tobacco products.
The battery-operated device provides small doses of nicotine when the smoker inhales but without the tar, tobacco or carbon monoxide of a traditional cigarette.
They are legal to smoke anywhere, even indoors. However, the end is blue to distinguish them from real cigarettes.
Company Director Tony Jones claims that initial feedback has been positive and that e-cigarettes are offering smokers a different choice than just quitting or carrying on.
He said: "Using this product, people are taking the hit they need, popping it back in their pocket or their purse or whatever, rather than smoking all of a normal cigarette
"So, the reality is, over time, it's a tool that can be used to reduce your dependence on nicotine."
Since its invention in 2003, the e-cigarette has been studied by health authorities across in the world. In some countries, it is banned.
Early in 2010, the UK Department of Health suggested consumers should "exercise caution" in the use of e-cigarettes until the findings of ongoing safety studies were published.