FDA Cracks Down on Retailers Selling Unauthorized E-Liquids and E-Cigarettes

Unauthorized e-liquid products from the Bad Drip brandSubmitted Image

WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Thursday, the FDA issued warning letters to six online retailers for selling unauthorized e-liquid products from the Bad Drip brand, which mimic prescription drug bottles. The retailers were also cited for selling unauthorized flavored, disposable e-cigarettes under brand names such as Funky Republic and HQD.

“It boggles the mind that someone thought it was a good idea to package a tobacco product to look like a prescription drug bottle,” said Brian King, director of the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products. “There’s no place for this gratuitous and blatantly dangerous packaging, and FDA is committed to taking action against the illegal sale of these products.”

The FDA’s actions stem from concerns that such packaging could mislead consumers and pose significant health risks. Additionally, the retailers were warned for selling flavored disposable e-cigarettes that appeal to youth. These flavors include apple watermelon and mint, which are particularly popular among young users.

According to the 2023 National Youth Tobacco Survey, 89.4% of middle and high school students who used e-cigarettes reported using flavored products, and 60.7% reported using disposable products. The FDA monitors various surveillance systems to identify products that attract youth and has taken compliance and enforcement actions based on these findings.

The retailers sold or distributed e-cigarette products in the United States without FDA authorization, violating the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. They now have 15 working days to respond to the FDA, detailing the steps they will take to correct these violations and prevent future offenses. Failure to comply could lead to more severe enforcement actions, including injunctions, seizures, and civil penalties.

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This move highlights the FDA’s efforts to regulate the tobacco market, particularly products that target or appeal to youth. By cracking down on unauthorized sales and misleading packaging, the agency aims to mitigate the potential health risks associated with vaping and e-cigarette use among young people.

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