Statement: FDA warns JUUL about improper marketing of e-cigarettes

Media Contacts

Warning comes as recent incidents highlight potential dangers of vaping


WASHINGTON — In a letter posted for the public today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officially warned the leading e-cigarette company, JUUL Labs, about illegally marketing its products as a less harmful alternative to combustible cigarettes, without the required authorization from the agency. 

Before marketing a product as a “modified risk tobacco product,” companies are required to go through a review process and provide scientific evidence for their claims of reduced risk. The FDA says that JUUL has not done so. The warning letter, citing testimony from a recent House Subcommittee hearing, said that a company representative told students that JUUL products are “much safer than cigarettes” and “totally safe.”

In response, U.S. PIRG’s “End the Nicotine Trap” campaign director Matthew Wellington released the following statement:

“We applaud the FDA for finally holding JUUL responsible for its irresponsible and misleading marketing, especially to impressionable teenagers. While it’s important to excavate the skeletons in JUUL’s closet, the FDA should now focus its attention on stopping the youth vaping epidemic sweeping the country. To do that most effectively, we need to prohibit the sale of all flavored e-cigarettes, and other flavored tobacco products.”