WASHINGTON ( Associated Press) – US health officials on Thursday ordered a nationwide recall of Juul-brand e-cigarettes, the latest blow to a company widely blamed for a national surge in teen vaping.
The ban is part of a campaign by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to put the multibillion-dollar vaping industry under scientific scrutiny after years of regulatory delays.
The FDA said Juul must stop selling its tobacco- and menthol-flavored vapes and cartridges. Those that are already in the market have to be eliminated. The FDA said consumers would not see any restrictions on possessing or using Juul products.
To remain in business, companies must demonstrate that their e-cigarettes benefit public health. In practice, this means that adult smokers who use them are likely to quit or cut back, while teens are unlikely to become addicted to them.
The FDA stressed that some big manufacturers like Juul may have played a “disproportionately large” role in the rise of teen vaping. The agency said Thursday that Juul did not provide sufficient evidence to show that marketing its products “would be appropriate to protect public health.”
Juul said it disagrees with the FDA’s findings and will seek to suspend the ban while considering other options, including possible appeals and talks with regulators.
The agency has authorized some applications from e-cigarette manufacturers. Since the fall, the FDA has approved tobacco-flavored vapes from RJ Reynolds, Logic, and others, but industry insiders and anti-tobacco activists have complained that those products make up only a small percentage of the market. , worth $6,000 million in the United States.
Associated Press writer Tom Murphy contributed to this report
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