TechnologyFDA criticizes Juul for telling students its e-cigs are ‘totally safe’
Trump wants to ban flavored e-cigarettes as concern grows about vaping
The FDA, CDC and FTC are taking action against e-cigs makers.
In a letter published today, the US Food and Drug Administration criticized Juul for telling students that its vaping products are "totally safe" and "99% safer than cigarettes.", Juul portrayed its products as "modified risk tobacco products." That is, Juul presented its vaping products as having "a lower risk of tobacco-related disease or are less harmful than one or more other commercially marketed tobacco products." Such claims can only be made with FDA approval, which Juul did not have.
In a letter to Juul CEO Kevin Burns, the FDA wrote:
"Referring to your ENDS [electronic nicotine delivery system] products as "99% safer" than cigarettes, "much safer" than cigarettes, "totally safe," and "a safer alternative than smoking cigarettes" is particularly concerning because these statements were made directly to children in school. Our concern is amplified by the epidemic rate of increase in youth use of ENDS products, including JUUL's products, and evidence that ENDS products contribute to youth use of, and addiction to, nicotine, to which youth are especially vulnerable."
The Trump administration plans to ban flavored e-cigs to curb teen vaping
The Trump administration announced today that it may ban the sale of most flavored e-cigarettes in an attempt to curb teen vaping, The New York Times reports. In a press release, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) shared that the FDA plans to finalize a policy to remove most non-tobacco-flavored e-cigs from the market. The FDA is expected to share specifics on the plan in the coming weeks. The decision comes amid outcry over the increase in teen vaping.
The letter says Juul "should immediately correct the violations." The company now has 15 days to respond to the FDA and detail the steps it's taken to right its wrongs. If Juul's actions fail to appease the FDA, the company could face penalties and potentially have its products seized. In a statement provided to Engadget, a Juul spokesperson said, "We are reviewing the letters and will fully cooperate."
The FDA first accused Juul ofto curb teen vaping in February. The , have launched their own investigations, too. Juul has taken steps to limit teen vaping -- like launching a program and requiring all by 2021. But those efforts could be quickly undermined by telling students that its e-cigs are "totally safe."
Juul stops selling its fruit-flavored vape products .
Today, Juul announced that it's suspending the sale of its fruit-flavored vape products in the US. It will no longer sell its mango, creme, fruit and cucumber varieties. The decision comes as the Trump administration is preparing to ban flavored e-cigs in an attempt to curb teen vaping and as the CDC continues to search for the cause of a vaping-related lung illness. Juul stopped selling those flavors in retail stores last year. Since then, they've only been available online. The company will continue to sell its mint and menthol nicotine pods even though those could also be subject to the Trump administration ban.
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