Juul recieves more harsh criticsm by FDA, threatens livelihood



In October of 2018 Juul sales made up for 75% of all e-cigarette sales. Juul is not currently FDA approved and the company has until spring 2020 to apply for approval as a new tobacco product.

On Monday, September 9th, the FDA issued a warning to Juul saying the company had violated federal regulations since they did not receive federal approval to advertise the vaping device as a safer alternative to cigarettes. In the last two years, Juul has been the most successful e-cigarette company on the market for nicotine products. 

Although this crackdown appears to be a step in the right direction to curb nicotine use among young people, it is two years too late. Juul Labs was founded in 2017 as a predecessor of the marijuana vaping company Pax Labs and now has an estimated net worth of $2.2 billion.

Although the FDA crackdown appears to be a good thing, it’s entirely pointless with cigarettes still being widely sold without restriction. The main problem many young people argue is that cigarettes have become a more appealing option. A pack of cigarettes normally costs less than $10, whereas a pack of Juul pods ranges anywhere from $17 to $25, depending on where they’re sold. One Juul pod is considered equivalent to the average amount of nicotine in a pack of cigarettes. However, because of how convenient the device is, most people vape one pod per day.

With more speculation of how unsafe vaping devices are and with the Trump administration banning all flavored e-juice, this could result in more young people smoking cigarettes. People would rather die at age 60 from lung cancer than die at age 22 from a vaping-related illness no one’s ever heard about. However, this represents the real problem: Big Tobacco.

Cigarettes are responsible for over 480,000 deaths per year while vaping has caused six deaths this year. Yet, the government has been fast to respond. The main problem with these new restrictions is that they will not deter people from switching to cigarettes. 

Juul created a clean, convenient way to ingest nicotine and because of this, people who never smoked cigarettes before started juuling constantly. It made the ritual of smoking so convenient that quitting vaping altogether is far more difficult when you can simply switch to cigarettes.

Although eight states, including Texas, have now raised the legal tobacco age from 18 to 21, it’s not enough to deter teenagers from buying them. This new law will not make much of a difference. If teens can buy alcohol with a fake ID, tobacco will be no different.

If the FDA is actually serious about its concern for the health of children, vaping is only one part of the problem. Sure, cigarettes have been around for much longer than vaping, but if we’re going to be serious about young people’s health, either give everyone the freedom to be responsible for whatever they put into their lungs or make tobacco illegal once and for all.