Juul CEO tells non-smokers not to vape: 'You're not our target consumer'

'Don’t start using nicotine if you don’t have a pre-existing relationship with nicotine'

Sabrina Barr
Friday 30 August 2019 14:59 BST
Juul CEO discourages non-smokers from vaping

The CEO of e-cigarette company Juul has warned non-smokers against vaping, stating that they are not the firm's "target consumer".

On Thursday, Juul CEO Kevin Burns was interviewed by CBS This Morning co-host Tony Dokoupil regarding the impact the company has had on smoking rates in the US.

During the interview, Dokoupil touched upon the fact that while e-cigarettes are marketed as alternatives to tobacco cigarettes, they have become increasingly popular among non-smokers.

When asked what advice he would give to non-smokers, Burns stated: "Don't vape. Don't use Juul.

"Don't start using nicotine if you don't have a pre-existing relationship with nicotine," the chief added. "Don't use the product. You're not our target consumer."

Despite the increased prevalence of e-cigarettes in recent years, little is known about the long-term effects of regular vaping.

Burns acknowledged this fact when it was raised by Dokoupil during their interview, stating: "That's true, that's a true statement."

Nonetheless, the CEO remained adamant in his belief that the Juul e-cigarette "does not present a risk" to consumers.

E-cigarette and vapour companies in the US, including Juul, are required to submit pre-market tobacco applications to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) by 12 May 2020 for approval.

If Juul's application is not approved by the FDA, the company will no longer be allowed to sell its product.

Last week, public health officials in Illinois announced that a patient had become the first to die of a mysterious lung illness linked to vaping.

The patient's death was revealed during a news conference held by the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, the FDA and the state of Illinois.

However, little information about the case was disclosed, including the patient's identity, what product they had used and what substance had been vaped.

Earlier this month, it was reported that US health officials are investigating around 100 cases of mysterious lung illness which are believed to be connected to vaping and e-cigarette use in 14 states across the country.

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Symptoms patients experienced before being hospitalised included difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, chest pain, vomiting, fever and diarrhoea.

This week, an advertisement for vaping product Diamond Mist E-Liquids was banned for implying that it was endorsed by Sir Mo Farah.

The advertisement, which was featured on the side of a bus in April and May, featured a photograph of eyes and eyebrows of a man who bore a resemblance to the Olympic runner.

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