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FDA warns e-cig companies to stop targeting teens

E-cigarette use is now described as an “epidemic” among teenagers.

According to the FDA, more than two million middle and high school students were regular users of e-cigarettes last year.

Federal law prohibits selling e-cigarettes to anyone under the age of eighteen.

Now, the FDA is giving manufacturers two months to prove they can keep their devices away from minors.

The agency has sent warning letters to retailers across the country.

Even independent stores like VaporVipes Vapes in Lafayette are doing their part to keep e-cigs out of the hands of children.

“I do feel that the advertising is an issue. I don’t feel that they should have any candy or food product on the actual labels,” said VaporVipes Vapes Store Manager Reginald Hossley.

Hossley pointed to a watermelon sweet and sour candy flavored e-juice bottle on his shelf as an example of the type of product he believes the FDA is looking at when they say the industry is targeting teenagers.

The FDA warns that if manufacturers don’t come up with a plan to keep e-cigs away from minors, the agency will remove flavored products from the market.

“I do think way too many underage kids are trying to buy vapes and own vapes. I do believe it does need to be stopped,” said Hossley.

Even if it means fewer products, retailers like VaperViper Vapes never want to sell to teens in the first place.

“Any time a younger person comes in here we check their ID, and if they’re not 18 they’re immediately kicked out,” said Hossley.

Josh Meny

Josh Meny

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