FDA Cracks Down On Vape Juice Packaging

A lot of juice companies these days rely on gimmicks to sell their product. Whether it is packaging that looks like a milk carton or a whipped cream can, this kind of marketing can be problematic for the vape industry because ultimately this packaging appeals to kids. For juice companies who stay away from this, this kind of flashy style can give the whole industry a bad name and lead to an FDA crack down. So when the FDA sent warning letters to 13 different manufacturers on Tuesday regarding their packaging, was anyone really surprised?

FDA commissioner Scott Gottleib said that these modes of packaging appeals to children due to their resemblance to cookies, candy, and juice boxes. And honestly, that is kind of true. But this mode of thinking is a blanket opinion that clouds the whole industry, when in reality it is a small minority of vape juice companies who are participating in this irresponsible marketing. Gottleib is quoted as saying, “You look at the lollipop for example. I don’t see how my 4- or 5-year-old doesn’t just look at that and see a lollipop. It’s a lollipop.”

FDA Crack Down Part of Larger Effort

He claims that this marketing is deliberately targeting children. This is probably a stretch. I don’t think any vape company wants that liability. Although obviously this packaging is problematic, I highly doubt these companies want children as consumers. The issue comes about when children under 6 come across these vape juices and get into them — thinking they are treats. Then the children are exposed to high levels of nicotine and must be hospitalized — a potentially deadly situation. 

All of these efforts are part of a larger campaign to target the industry and prevent it from creating younger consumers. The FDA insists that when teenagers become vapers, it eventually leads to smoking. This letter they sent is supposedly just the start of the FDA crack down.

The letter comes on the heels of an all-out blitz against retailers selling JUUL products in their stores. The FDA sent warning letters to 40 stores for selling the pod system to minors.  It’s funny because JUUL’s packaging is so basic — no one can say it is targeting children or teens. And yet it is the most popular device in that age group right now.

So what’s next from the FDA? Only time will tell. For now, as an industry, we just have to follow marketing codes and be as responsible as possible.

*Any opinions expressed in this blog are strictly those of the author and are not affiliated with Mt Baker Vapor*

If you liked this, you will also like last week’s blog!

Caroline Sparks

Writer, Vaper, Advocate Have an idea? Comment below!

  • Ed B says:

    Unfortunately the vaping industry has always looked like it was marketing to teens, which of course filters down to younger kids. The names of juices has always been targeted towards teens. This baffles me because as a mature adult I wanted to quit smoking, not have something that had a name that should have been on bubble gum or a video game. Jizmoglobin is my favorite vape – go figure about the name. It’s cute marketing to make us try more flavors but it is also a magnet for teens to try because the name is cool. And what one teen sees as cool creates peer pressure for a kid to be ‘one of the boys/girls’. Enter greed and now there are literally thousands of juice names by too many manufacturers. The ‘older’ folks who wear the suits and pay the salaries immediately formed negative opinions without having much, or any, real information. Then the anti-everything folks created such a stink that the news media trumpeted that vaping was bad for you. Forget the real facts that it was safer than smoking and was a great avenue to quit. I’m sorry to say that when it became newsworthy it was slaughtered. For those who smoked for many years it has been a blessing. I try not to preach the positives of vaping unless I am invited to do so and I back out of confrontations with my canned reply: “You need to read the whole story, not just the headlines”. I have now been an ex-smoker and avid vaper for over five years and thank the good lord for it. If nothing else I will live a few days, or months or years, longer and have less medical problems (and bills) than I would have had as a smoker.

    Now fix the damn packaging if that is what needs to be done. And if you want to do the right thing, make its use legal only to those of legal smoking age.

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