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South Carolina joins investigation into Juul Labs

Staff Report //February 25, 2020//

South Carolina joins investigation into Juul Labs

Staff Report //February 25, 2020//

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South Carolina has joined a multistate investigation of electronic cigarette company Juul Labs.

The 39-state coalition is probing Juul’s marketing and sales practices, including target audiences for advertising, claims regarding nicotine content, and statements regarding product risks, safety and effectiveness as a smoking cessation device, S.C. Attorney General Alan Wilson’s office announced Tuesday.

“Our goal is always to uphold the rule of law and protect our citizens,” Wilson said in a news release. “We’re looking into whether Juul is following the law and not misleading people with false or misleading claims, including trying to convince teenagers that vaping is safe.

“I want to stress, though, that this is just an investigation at this point, and no lawsuit or charges have been filed.”

Wilson’s office cited the 2019 National Youth Tobacco Survey, conducted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control, which found that more than 5 million youth reported having used e-cigarettes within the last 30 days, an increase from 3.6 million in 2018. The study also found that 20.8% of high school student vaped in 2018.

The 2017 S.C. Youth Tobacco Survey (.pdf) conducted by the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control found that e-cigarette use (13%) surpassed conventional cigarette smoking among high school students (12%) for the first time.

In May 2019, Juul announced a $12.5 million investment in a new assembly facility in Lexington County.