USA vaping giant JUUL has been ordered to stop selling e-cigarettes after it was decided to have played a "disproportionate role in the rise of youth vaping".
The ruling was made by the FDA (the "Food and Drug Administration", a US government agency that regulates food, medicine, tobacco and more). They say that they do not have enough data to prove that allowing the company to continue to tell and market their products is "appropriate for the protection of public health".
In the USA, flavoured pre-filled pods are currently banned - while you can buy bottled e-liquid or disposable vapes in any flavour you can think of, you will only find closed pods in menthol or tobacco flavours. While we have our own sets of regulations in the UK (for example, tanks and pods cannot exceed a 2ml capacity and nicotine can be no stronger than 20mg), we have no similar flavour bans.
JUUL Labs began in 2015. By the end of 2017, they were the most popular e-cig brand in the United States, and by September in 2018 they had a market share of over 70%. Despite their success, they have been plagued with legal issues; for example, in 2020 the state of Massachusetts brought a suit alleging that they deliberated advertised to children and teenagers. In late 2019, JUUL published the changes they would make in their youth advertising practices as part of a settlement with the Center for Environmental Health, such as stopping marketing on social media and not advertising near schools or playgrounds. At the same time, JUUL voluntarily discontinued their flavours outside of tobacco, mint and menthol, and soon after this they also discontinued their mint pods. As of October 2021, their market share was 41%.
In their statement, the FDA explains that, while they do not have any information or evidence that suggests a hazard associated with the use of JUUL products, they do not have enough evidence to fully assess the "potential toxicological risks" either.
"As with all manufacturers, JUUL had the opportunity to provide evidence demonstrating that the marketing of their products meets these standards. However, the company did not provide that evidence and instead left us with significant questions. Without the data needed to determine relevant health risks, the FDA is issuing these marketing denial orders." - Michele Mital, Acting Director of the FDA's Center for Tobacco Products
In the UK, vaping products such as vape kits, pods, disposable vapes and e-liquids are governed by the MHRA - the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency. It is similar to the US's FDA. At Vapourcore, we operate a strict policy of only selling products that have been approved by the MHRA - in fact, we make sure each and every one of our suppliers provides us proof of approval before we decide to stock their products. This ensures that our offering is 100% UK legal - you'll find no high-nicotine foreign imports or counterfeit goods here!