The Westwind

Juul increases age limit

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Juul is a type of electronic cigarette that uses nicotine salts that exist in leaf-based tobacco for its key ingredient. Juul quickly made its presence felt as its popularity grew rapidly mainly throughout the youth of America. I think there is a problem with minors gaining access to pods and the Juul itself. Parents that don’t care, friends that are the legal age, and smoke shops that don’t ID their customers are just a few examples of how easy it is to get a Juul.

Juul´s mission statement is to ¨improve the lives of the world´s one billion adult smokers.¨ Juul controls 72 percent of the e-cigarette industry.

Their sales went from 2.2 million devices in 2016 to 16.2 million devices in 2017, a 636 percent increase. I think that Juul has marketed their products to younger people including teens. They threw a party to celebrate the launch of their devices and posted pictures with younger people as models. Younger people are a sensitive demographic in this day and age. They have also used social media to advertise instead which is a form that the average adult doesn’t use as much as a teenager. 

This all ties together with tobacco products. People aged 40-49 are more likely to smoke cigarettes than people who are 18. Why is Juul advertising with young people, but not advertising to older generations? This is very suspicious and calls for a lot of backlash.

According to the New York Times, “Between 2015 and 2017, Juul put up a series of ads for its devices that featured young men and women on YouTube and on billboards. One image showed a woman on a yellow background that a second former employee, who also did not want their name published, said “could have been 18.”

That would be illegal in California, the state in which Juul’s headquarters are located, where the legal age to use cigarettes and e-cigs is 21. Federal law mandates people be at least 18 to buy tobacco products.

Juul has been at the center of controversy all of 2017 and the majority of 2018. The FDA had to step in recently and take thousands of legal documents in their investigation. I think it is a great thing that Juul has decided to up their security. They have stopped selling fruit flavors in stores and you have to be 21 to buy online. The FDA has enforced and acted upon a national problem. There is still a long way to go, but I think we are headed the right direction.

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