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Tobacco

Juul Suspends Sale of All Flavored Pods

Move part of larger effort at ‘earning trust’
Photograph by CSP Staff

SAN FRANCISCO —Major electronic-cigarette manufacturer Juul Labs has suspended all sales—including online—of its nontobacco, nonmenthol flavors, officials said, following its decision last fall to pull its flavored vaping products from retail outlets such as convenience stores.

The suspension of its Mango, Creme, Fruit and Cucumber vaping pod sales is temporary, pending review from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of its expected premarket tobacco application (PMTA) submissions. Those submissions are due in May 2020, with the FDA then needing time to review all applications.

“Given the lack of trust in our industry, we believe the FDA’s PMTA process and its ‘appropriate for the protection of the public health’ standard are the best ways to assess the role these products can play in helping adult smokers move away from combustible cigarettes, while also being kept out of the hands of youth,” said K.C. Crosthwaite, Juul’s new CEO. “We must reset the vapor category by earning the trust of society and working cooperatively with regulators, policymakers and stakeholders to combat underage use while providing an alternative to adult smokers.”

As San Francisco-based Juul continues to evaluate what products to submit for PMTA, Crosthwaite said the company will continue to develop scientific evidence to support the use of flavored products, “coupled with strict measures to combat underage use, as we believe these products can play an important role in helping adult smokers move away from combustible cigarettes.”

The company will also continue to refrain from lobbying the government on its pending draft flavor guidance and will fully support and comply with the final policy when effective, he said.

After replacing former Juul CEO Kevin Burns in September, Crosthwaite has begun what the company calls a “broad review” of the company’s practices and policies. Since Crosthwaite took the CEO role, the company has suspended all broadcast, print and digital product advertising in the United States.

Prior to the Oct. 17 announcement, Juul sold its flavored products through Juul.com, which has age-verification controls, the company said.

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