Juul is so hot that it set the Vaping Debate on fire

Juul is so hot that it set the Vaping Debate on fire

The Juul e-cigarette is designed to help adult smokers quit smoking. The developers wanted to experience getting a stimulating nicotine hit rather than sucking a stinking, smoking tobacco rod. Their success made Juul the top-selling e-cigarette in the US in two years, but in part reached that position by attracting a large fanbase of children under the age of 18 who are not allowed to legally buy such products. Concerns about the risk of steam for young people have prompted the US Food and Drug Administration to warn that e-cigarette regulations will be tightened up unless their manufacturers persuade the agency that they combat the use of minors.

1. What is a Juul?

It is a so-called steam device that contains a battery that heats nicotine fluid. The user inhales nicotine, an addictive alkaloid found in tobacco, and exhales aerosol. There is no burning tobacco and therefore no smoke or tar. The Juul has a sleek design. It is made of brushed aluminum and resembles a USB flash drive. Since he is small, he can be operated by minors by hand. If a teacher or a parent does not seek, he discreetly hits and inhales the aerosol in a sleeve or collar. And like many other steam products, the refills come in tasty flavors like mango and mint.

2. How popular is Juul?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, sales of equipment in the United States in 2017 increased by more than 600 percent to 16.2 million. According to CDC, Juul sold nearly 1 in 3 e-cigarettes by the end of 2017. According to market researcher IRI, Juul's share of the US dollar's sales increased from 16 percent at the end of 2017 to 53 percent. The Vuse from Reynolds American Inc. is the second largest with only 10 percent

3. How common is Teen Damping?

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb has called it an epidemic. US officials say vapor pressure among students has risen by 75 percent between 2017 and 2018, according to preliminary figures. This meant that about 20 percent of the students spoiled themselves. Among middle school students, the number of respondents rose by almost 50 percent.

4. What is it about?

Gottlieb put it this way: "The technology that can help adults end an addiction can not pull a generation of children into a new one." While previous evidence suggests that fuming is a safer choice than lighting it up, it is not enough data to draw a final conclusion. It is plausible, but not proven, that e-cigarette aerosols can damage tissues and cause diseases, including cancer. The effects of nicotine on humans have not been well studied, although adolescents appear to be particularly vulnerable to them, with some evidence suggesting that it may affect the brain's development. A US National Academies of Sciences report that there is considerable evidence that young vapers are more likely to try cigarettes than nonvapers.

5. What has the FDA done?

During the summer, the agency issued more than 1,300 warning letters and fines to retailers who had illegally sold e-cigarettes to minors. In September, FDA inspectors visited the headquarters of Juul Labs, Inc. in San Francisco and took more than 1,000 pages of sales and marketing documents. It gave e-cig makers the opportunity to develop plans for the immediate and substantial reversal of the emergence of young people involved in steam production until early November. For the FDA, which four years ago had pushed back the steam generator regime, it was a tone beyond the current ban on selling minors and the need for warnings for nicotine addiction. At the time, Gottlieb said he wanted to make sure that an industry with the potential to lower smoking rates was not hindered by regulation.

6. What can the FDA do?

Officials have focused on the possibility of banning or restricting the use of flavorings in e-cigarettes, which are prohibited in normal cigarettes except for menthol. Gottlieb has said that the ban on online sales of e-cigarettes is on the table. He said the agency is considering "the strict consideration" of pushing the devices off the market until each product has been individually tested and approved.

7. How did e-cigarette manufacturers react?

Altria Group Inc., Reynolds and Juul Labs have stated they would support legislation to raise the legal age for tobacco buyers to 21. Altria announced that it has withdrawn its MarketTen Elite and Apex e-cigarettes from MarkTen temporarily until the FDA gives the green light. It also said it would cease selling nu-mark cigarette alternatives in flavors other than tobacco, menthol and mint until the agency's approval. Juul Labs has pushed back against the possibility of a ban on taste. The company argues that the nice taste would help adults change cigarettes and stay changed. In comments to the FDA, it said a ban could create a "gray market" for flavored pods, such as the Internet and Native American reservations. At the same time, Juul has pledged to spend $ 30 million to prevent the use of minors. It's about hiring secret buyers and talking with students and parents about the risks of nicotine.

To contact the reporters on this story: Anna Edney in Washington at aedney@bloomberg.net, Sophie Alexander in New York at salexander82@bloomberg.net; Olivia Zaleski in San Francisco at ozaleski@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Drew Armstrong at darmstrong17@bloomberg.net, Lisa Beyer, Timothy Annett

© 2018 Bloomberg L.P.

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