JUUL under scrutiny for raising nicotine levels in e-cigarettes

JUUL is one of the fastest growing vaping companies, with its main customer base being young adults. For many years, the company has been steadily raising the nicotine content of its e-cigarettes, with little scrutiny.

Now, a report has been published stating that the company has undone decades of public health messages and campaigns that have tried to keep children and teenagers away from nicotine.

young person smoking e-cigaretteFedorovacz | Shutterstock


The report, which was written by a team at Stanford University and led by Dr. Robert Jackler, was published in the latest issue of the BMJ journal Tobacco Control, entitled, “Nicotine arms race: JUUL and the high-nicotine product market.”

The company initially used 1 to 2 percent nicotine refills, but quickly increased this to 5 percent, spurring other vaping companies to raise their nicotine levels too.

The effect of this has been huge. Now, almost all refills contain 5 to 7 percent nicotine.

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.

Dr. Robert Jackler, Lead Author

A 5 percent pod delivers the same amount of nicotine as a packet of cigarettes, write the authors of the study. Jackler explained that such high amounts of nicotine may “be a benefit to addicted adult smokers,” who were trying to quit smoking, “but it also makes it potently addictive to nicotine-naive teenagers.”

There is a steady rise in vaping among teenagers in the US and health advocates are calling for the US Food and Drug Administration to enforce stricter laws and regulations.

In a statement released in 2017, the FDA said it is, “committed to encouraging innovations that have the potential to make a notable public health difference and inform policies and efforts that will best protect kids and help smokers quit cigarettes.”

Juul spokeswoman, Victoria Davis said, “As part of our commitment to prevent underage use, we are taking swift and decisive action against counterfeit and infringing products.”

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Written by

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Dr. Ananya Mandal is a doctor by profession, lecturer by vocation and a medical writer by passion. She specialized in Clinical Pharmacology after her bachelor's (MBBS). For her, health communication is not just writing complicated reviews for professionals but making medical knowledge understandable and available to the general public as well.


Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:

  • APA

    Mandal, Ananya. (2019, February 08). JUUL under scrutiny for raising nicotine levels in e-cigarettes. News-Medical. Retrieved on January 27, 2022 from https://www.news-medical.net/news/20190208/JUUL-under-scrutiny-after-raising-nicotine-levels-in-e-cigarettes.aspx.

  • MLA

    Mandal, Ananya. "JUUL under scrutiny for raising nicotine levels in e-cigarettes". News-Medical. 27 January 2022. <https://www.news-medical.net/news/20190208/JUUL-under-scrutiny-after-raising-nicotine-levels-in-e-cigarettes.aspx>.

  • Chicago

    Mandal, Ananya. "JUUL under scrutiny for raising nicotine levels in e-cigarettes". News-Medical. https://www.news-medical.net/news/20190208/JUUL-under-scrutiny-after-raising-nicotine-levels-in-e-cigarettes.aspx. (accessed January 27, 2022).

  • Harvard

    Mandal, Ananya. 2019. JUUL under scrutiny for raising nicotine levels in e-cigarettes. News-Medical, viewed 27 January 2022, https://www.news-medical.net/news/20190208/JUUL-under-scrutiny-after-raising-nicotine-levels-in-e-cigarettes.aspx.


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.