The Possible Lithium-Ion Battery Shortage and Its Effect on the Vape Industry

Sabrina Taylor on Jun 7th 2021

By now, you've probably heard the panicked rumors about the impending lithium-ion battery shortage. While it isn't exactly looming directly over our heads as we speak, most analysts are in agreement that the auto industry's interest in electric vehicles will inevitably require more and more of the raw materials needed to produce batteries. As GM, Ford, and start-ups like Rivian and Lordstown Motors begin their ambitious transitions to electric, battery production will likely struggle initially to keep up with the demand.

The reality is that the United States' dependence on Chinese battery production could be cause for massive concern as the shift to electric grows. Sure, there are still large-scale American battery manufacturing facilities (such as Tesla's Gigafactory), but the U.S. has fallen behind Asian and European production. Not that it's going smoothly overseas, either. International manufacturers like LG Chem and SK Innovation in Korea are currently still battling through trade disputes, which in turn is creating difficulties for budding battery factories in countries like Georgia.

So what can the vape industry expect if and when lithium-ion batteries become scarce? The safe assumption is that interest in vape kits and mods will likely decline. Instead of paying top-dollar to replace vape batteries, current owners of battery-operated kits might start to look for other options - devices that charge solely by USB or don't charge at all. It's a reasonable change of heart, too, as more and more pod devices are built with ports to support Type-C, a USB style that boasts a full charge in half the time as older USB styles.

Vape retailers will probably also see a rise in demand for disposable vapes, as well. They're convenient because of their size and portability, and require virtually zero set-up or preparation to use - and most importantly, no batteries or charging.

While we don't recommend doomsday-scale preparations to combat the oncoming lithium-ion shortage, any reasonable vape business owner would consider stocking up on vape batteries sooner rather than later. Having alternative solutions like disposables and pod devices on-hand for customers getting fed up with the cost of keeping their kits running isn't a bad a idea, either.

Sources:

Brigham, Katie. “The U.S. Is Facing a Lithium-Ion Battery Shortage as Electric Vehicle Production Ramps Up.” CNBC, 8 Apr. 2021, www.cnbc.com/2021/04/08/the-us-is-facing-a-lithiu...

Newton, Emily. “Is There a Shortage of Lithium-Ion Batteries?” Www.globaltrademag.com, 30 Apr. 2021, www.globaltrademag.com/is-there-a-shortage-of-lit... Accessed 7 June 2021.