FDA cracks down on Juul and flavored e-cigarettes amidst ‘youth vaping epidemic’

OCEAN CITY, Md. – “If the device was used in its original intent I think it would really benefit a lot of people,” said Cloud 9 Vape Co-owner Miki Katna.

Electronic cigarette company’s are feeling the heat after the Federal Drug Administration announced that there was a serious youth vaping epidemic in the country, and action must be taken.

“The epidemic is a result of kids obtaining them and not using them in moderation,” said Katna.

“People just need to take heed in regards to the different precautions that the FDA is putting out and announcing around the use of electronic smoking devices,” said Chronic Disease and Tobacco Supervisor  for the Worcester County Health Department, Crystal Bell.

On Wednesday, the FDA announced that they would be giving manufacturers like Juul, Vuse, and Logic 60 days to change their marketing strategies and come up with a plan that would prevent youth vaping. If FDA officials don’t agree with their ideas, they could go as far as taking these popular items off the market. And that has some business owners concerned.

“If they have the power to take down a corporation such as large as juul they have the power to take down the fundamental background of vaping,” said Katna.

Health officials say marketing strategies such as the many flavors you can choose from for your vape are one of the many reasons why children and teens want to get their hands on them.

“The different flavorings are attractive to youth,” said Bell.

But vape store owners say the different flavors were actually intended to help people who wanted to quit smoking.

“The result of having these funky flavors is because if you already quit to smoke, why would you not start enjoying from flavors rather than just having tobacco or menthol. That’s why it appeals to other people. And it shouldn’t really appeal to children but it does,” said Katna.

But one thing health officials and business owners can agree on, is that the epidemic is real and something has to change.

“I think that a corporation like juul can use some of their money to fund campaigns that are necessary in negating the attraction of children,” said Katna.

“Youth that may not necessarily have smoke conventional cigarettes, are now turning to these electronic cigarettes or vaping devices, they’re more likely to smoke cigarettes in the future and that is something that we definitely have to take into consideration,” said Bell.

Juul, one of the major e-cigarette manufactures responded to the FDA’s decision by saying “JUUL Labs will work proactively with the FDA in response to its request. We are committed to preventing underage use of our product and we want to be part of the solution in keeping e-cigarettes out of the hands of young people.”

 

Categories: Local News, Maryland