Federal Regulators Ban Juul, Leapfrogging States’ Efforts

By: - June 24, 2022 12:00 am

Adam Hergenreder, right, and his mother, Polly, attend a news conference in 2019 in Chicago, where their attorney announced the filing of a civil lawsuit against electronic cigarette maker Juul Labs Inc., arguing that the vaping product caused Adam severe lung damage. The Food and Drug Administration announced Thursday it was banning Juul vaping devices. Charles Rex Arbogast/The Associated Press

The federal Food and Drug Administration on Thursday banned the popular Juul electronic cigarette, leapfrogging regulators from several states who previously had tried to crack down on the vaping products, arguing they entice young people to ingest addictive nicotine.

The FDA said in a news release that it had issued marketing denial orders to Juul Labs Inc. for “all of their products currently marketed in the United States.”

The order means the company must stop selling all Juul products, including the Juul vaping device and its four types of pods: Virginia tobacco-flavored pods and menthol-flavored pods, with nicotine concentrations of 5.0% and 3.0%.

“Today’s action is further progress on the FDA’s commitment to ensuring that all e-cigarette and electronic nicotine delivery system products currently being marketed to consumers meet our public health standards,” said FDA Commissioner Robert M. Califf in a statement.

The Journal of the American Medical Association found in June 2021 that Juul was the most commonly reported usual brand of e-cigarette among high school and middle school students in 2020.

States have been working to limit Juul products for years. A year ago, North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein, a Democrat, settled a lawsuit with the company that required Juul to pay $40 million and make changes in the way it handles marketing of its products in the state. North Carolina was the first state to sue Juul.

In 2020, officials from 39 states announced they were looking into the marketing and sales of vaping products by Juul, including whether the company targeted youth.

Attorneys general from Connecticut, Florida, Nevada, Oregon and Texas led that effort.

In 2019, several states, including Maine, Montana, Oklahoma and Virginia, banned vaping or possession of an e-cigarette such as Juul on school grounds. At least 18 states have raised the legal smoking age for both e-cigarettes and ordinary tobacco cigarettes to 21.

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Elaine S. Povich
Elaine S. Povich

Elaine S. Povich covers consumer affairs for Stateline. Povich has reported for Newsday, the Chicago Tribune and United Press International.