Study: E-Cigarette Maker Juul Triggers Nicotine “Arms Race”

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Phillip Fuhrmann says, “The first time I Juuled was at the end of eighth grade. My friend handed it to me and I had no idea what it was.”

That’s 15-year-old Phillip Furhman speaking at a New York Council Health meeting.

Phillip Fuhrman says, “When I started hearing all the facts and everything bad about it, it was already too late. I was already hooked onto it.”

Phillip’s story has become shockingly familiar.

You have probably heard of Juul by now.

It has been around since June of 2015, and millions of high school kids have already ‘Juuled’ – or vaped – using the device.

What you may not know, however, is how Juul’s high five-percent nicotine pods have caused a so-called “nicotine arms race” across the vaping industry.

Stanford University School of Medicine Dr. Robert Jackler says, “When Juul came on the market three-and-a-half years ago, the vapor market was mostly 1 and 2 percent nicotine. It’s now 6-7 percent nicotine. This tiny Juul cartridge delivers to a person’s body the same amount of nicotine as this entire box of Camels of 20 cigarettes.”

Stanford professor doctor robert jackler makes his case in a study published in the BMJ journal ‘Tobacco Control.’

His research group has been tracking the industry for nearly a decade.

Dr. Jackler says, “When Juul came out with very high nicotine electronic cigarettes, it triggered a nicotine arms race amongst competitive companies seeking to emulate the success of Juul.”

Juul is now winning the race.

They now control about three-quarters of the vaping market in the United States.

While federal law prohibits selling these products to minors, Jackler worries that vaping companies like juul are using new technology to pack more nicotine into their products.

Dr. Jackler says, “There’s no regulation of the amount of nicotine in electronic cigarettes. Highly concentrated nicotine solutions are potently addictive and nicotine addiction is a very difficult addiction to break.”

Phillip Fuhrman says, “I’d be waking up in the middle of the night, I’d have cold sweats or whatever. It was just not a great experience.”

Co-founder, Parents Against Vaping E-cigarettes Dorian Fuhrman says, “And then I think that’s when he really understood what nicotine addiction was.”

Remember: Many of these kids have never smoked before and are suddenly being exposed to the same nicotine levels as a full pack of cigarettes – without any build up of tolerance.

Juul says it’s taken swift action against counterfeit and infringing products and is committed to preventing youth from accessing its products.

Juul also says there were products on the market in the range of four-to-five percent nicotine before Juul’s rise in popularity.

But Jackler says the majority of products were much lower when Juul launched, and it was indeed the popularity of Juul that sent nicotine levels soaring.

Dorian Fuhrman says, “We hear that sixth grade is doing it, fourth grade is doing it. These kids are facing a lifetime of serious nicotine addiction.”

Phillip Fuhrman says, “I still sometimes crave a Juul and it’s really hard to say no because there are really Juuls everywhere, so it’s really hard to fully stop.”

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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