HealthDay News — Calling the use of electronic cigarettes a burgeoning epidemic among teens, the U.S Food and Drug Administration today announced a crackdown on the sale of Juuls and other flavored e-cigarette devices to minors.
More than 1,200 warning letters and fines have been sent to retailers and five major e-cigarette manufacturers who illegally sold Juul devices, which look like computer flash drives, and other e-cigarette products to minors. The companies have 60 days to come up with plans to stop those sales or the FDA may consider a ban on the sale of all flavored e-cigarette products, the agency said.
“The disturbing and accelerating trajectory we’re seeing in youth and the resulting path to addiction must end,” FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D., said at a morning media briefing. “We’re seriously considering a policy change that would lead to the removal of these flavored products from the market.”
Manufacturers of the five top-selling national e-cigarette brands have received FDA warning letters, Gottlieb said. All of these brands — JUUL, Vuse, MarkTen, blu e-cigs, and Logic — made up the majority of products sold illegally to minors, the agency said. The retailers targeted by the FDA include 7-Eleven stores, Circle K convenience shops, and Shell gas stations. In addition, the agency’s plan includes a series of actions to stop youth use of tobacco products, especially e-cigarettes.