Israel Bans JUUL Vapor Products
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has signed into law a ban on JUUL vapor products. The popular JUUL devices and pods will no longer be imported into Israel from the United States. The Israeli government has declared that JUUL represents a risk to public health. The basis for the ban is the e-liquid nicotine level. While each JUUL pod contains only 0.7 ml of nicotine, the level of concentration is well over 2%. In fact, the nicotine level in JUUL pods is 5%, or 50 mg. In Israel, an e-liquid with a nicotine content over 20 mg is deemed a public health risk.
Israel is progressive when it comes to using medical marijuana or other alternative therapies. But they are taking a hard line on the amount of nicotine in e-liquids. It will be illegal to buy, sell, or possess JUUL products in Israel. So any Americans traveling to Israel should not take their JUUL vape devices or pods with them.
The Israeli government says that their nicotine standards are in accordance with those of the European Union. The EU regulations dictate that no e-liquid product will have a nicotine content above 20 mg.
JUUL is a US company based in the Silicon Valley. The company is fighting back against the ban. In fact, they have petitioned the High Court in Israel to issue an injunction to block the ban. JUUL claims to be selectively targeted because other vapor products that exceed 20 ml are available in Israel. The company says that the health system in Israel cannot allow the legal and moral injustice caused by the ban. Thus far, there is no word on any High Court decision.
JUUL is concerned that regulators are making decisions with insufficient information. Furthermore, they claim that this decision benefits traditional tobacco companies selling cigarettes. In a statement, a JUUL spokesperson said, “It is not possible to accept the conduct of a regulator working in the dark, with a hidden agenda and strengthening the status of the tobacco companies at the expense of an alternative designed to save millions of smokers the cancerous influence of consuming tobacco.”
The industry is watching to see how all of this plays out. The FDA may be watching as well. After all, the FDA has identified nicotine reduction as a goal of future tobacco regulations. As of this time, there is no known plan to impose similar restrictions in the US.