Image by Jordan Whitfield

This morning, the Wall Street Journal reported that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is preparing to order Juul Labs Inc. to remove all of its e-cigarettes from the U.S. market. Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) strongly condemned this decision.

This is yet another decision from FDA that will devastate public health across the country, and lead to easily preventable deaths” stated Tim Andrews, ATR’s Director of Consumer Issues.  “Juul’s reduced risk tobacco alternatives are critical tools of smoking cessation that have been proven to help cigarette smokers across the U.S. save their lives through transitioning away from deadly combustible tobacco.

The evidence is clear and irrefutable: e-cigarettes are proven to be 95% safer than combustible cigarettes, more effective than all other smoking cessation methods, and according to a study commissioned by Georgetown University Medical Centre have the potential to save up to 6.6 million American lives over the next decade. This is why they are endorsed by over 100 of the world’s leading medical organizations as a vital component of reducing preventable deaths around the world.

Andrews pointed to other countries such as the United Kingdom, where Juul and other e-cigarette products are marketed and sold as smoking cessation devices: “The UK has embraced tobacco harm reduction, with e-cigarettes been promoted and sold in hospitals, and publicly funded advertising campaigns urging smokers to make the switch. Tens of thousands of UK smokers quit every year with e-cigarettes.”

Despite claims of a “youth vaping epidemic”, CDC data has shown that youth vaping has plummeted by 60% over the past two years, and only 3.1 percent of high-school age and 0.3% of middle-school age students used e-cigarettes daily.

Andrews concluded: “This is a decision grounded in ideology, not science. It is a decision that will cause countless deaths that could have otherwise been prevented. For the sake of public health, it is a decision we hope will be overturned in the courts on appeal.”