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Fake Juul pods are being sold in stores

man using a juul
Photo: Eva Hambach/AFP/Getty Images

Counterfeit Juul pods are lining the shelves of retail stores following the company's decision last fall to stop selling fruity flavors in stores, CNBC reports.

Why it matters: These fake Juul pods — which look real — may present health concerns. They are also a public relations problem for Juul, which is trying to appear cooperative with the effort to crack down on teen vaping.

What they're saying: Former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb told CNBC that the recent cases of lung illnesses associated with vaping are probably linked to counterfeit products.

  • "Counterfeit products are a direct threat to public health and our plan to combat youth usage," Juul CEO Kevin Burns said in a statement to CNBC.

Go deeper: U.S. investigates fatality from vaping as lung-related illnesses rise