FDA initiative for restrictions on Juuls a good choice


Phillips Market, located near campus, is a vender of Juul Pods, the flavoring component in Juuls. On Friday, Nov. 16, 2018 in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Michael Clubb | Staff

The tobacco industry took a needed hit on Nov. 15 from the new Food and Drug Administration’s restrictions when it comes to popular flavored e-cigarettes and tobacco products. Many well-known companies must now comply with the FDA’s new regulations, which includes Juuls.

With its sleek design, flashy colors and flavors and a slogan as an “attractive alternative to cigarettes,” (listed on the homepage of its website) Juul has, either purposefully or accidentally, adhered to minors across the country, harboring addiction in a small, easily-accessible tube.

And not only are Juuls becoming increasingly popular among minors, they’re also quite popular on college campuses; although most college campuses prohibit smoking, Juuls are faster and can easily be pocketed, unlike cigarettes, making vaping stealthy, too.

While the FDA’s original thought of proposing a complete “ban” of flavors of Juuls didn’t catch, the FDA, at the least, did initiate a proposal to crack down on the sale of these flavors to teens in gas stations and retail stores. The flavors, such as mango, fruit and creme, pose a real attractiveness compared to normal cigarettes– something that shouldn’t be advertised as such, especially when the long-term effects of smoking Juuls are still unknown.

FDA compliance checks also uncovered 40 violations for illegal sales of Juul products to youth, one of which came from a local Lexington gas station, according to the Kernel. The FDA decided it was time to act.

The FDA has taken a small step necessary to stop the addiction among minors and young people. The easiness of walking into a gas station to purchase another flavored Juul pod is over; now, one must order these products online and wait for them to be shipped, which will hopefully reduce the attractiveness and desire to smoke among young people.

And, adding to the now lack-of-ease, all sales on Juuls’ website are for customers 21 and older, even though it’s perfectly legal for an 18-year-old to purchase tobacco in most U.S. stores.

The FDA’s leap to prevent smoking addiction is one that can work, and one that is necessary.

It’s time to take away the easiness of purchasing flavorful tobacco products and, hopefully, take away the rampant smoking addiction among minors and young people.