Updated Oct 4, 2019

Court temporarily stalls New York ban on flavored e-cigarettes

A man smokes an e-cigarette in New York in 2017.  Photo: Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images

A state appellate court blocked New York's ban on all flavored electronic cigarettes the first week of October, preventing New York from becoming the second state to put such a ban in place, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The big picture: The Food and Drug Administration announced last month that it was finalizing plans to pull all flavored e-cigarette cartridges from the market. Massachusetts currently has the harshest vaping ban in U.S.

  • 20 people have died from a lung-related illness linked to vaping as of Oct. 8 — including a 17-year-old male in New York. Several of those fatalities "involved a middle-aged or older person," per the Washington Post.
  • Vaping "is getting young people addicted to nicotine," Gov. Andrew Cuomo said.
It is undeniable that vaping companies are deliberately using flavors like bubblegum ... to get young people hooked on e-cigarettes — it's a public health crisis and it ends today."
— New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo statement

Context: Juul, one of the most popular e-cigarette brands, stopped selling flavored cartridges in retail stores that do not ask for age verification in 2018. The company still sells several flavors online and in smoke shops.

What they're saying: Cuomo said while originally announcing New York's ban, "The only situation, in my mind, factually, that justifies vaping is if you had a person who said 'I currently smoke and I have tried every other device to stop smoking. I've tried everything. Nothing has worked, except vaping.'"

  • A Juul spokesperson told Axios, in response to the Trump administration's push to crack down on flavored e-cigarettes, that the company strongly agreed with the need for aggressive category-wide action on flavored products.
"We will fully comply with the final FDA policy when effective."
— Juul spokesperson

Go deeper: Nicotine addictions increasingly driving vape users back to cigarettes

Editor's note: This story has been updated with the current death toll for a lung-related illness linked to vaping, and to reflect that a state court blocked the New York ban.

Go deeper

Oregon bans flavored vaping products

A man vapes in Gotham Vape in Queens, New York on Sept 17. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Oregon's governor announced a temporary, 180-day ban on all flavored electronic cigarette products on Friday.

The big picture: At least 18 people across the U.S. have died from a lung injury associated with vaping in 15 states, as of Oct. 4. Two of those deaths were in Oregon. Gov. Kate Brown said Oregon is dedicated to developing legislation to ban flavored vaping products permanently — while the Trump administration says it is planning to take similar action at the federal level.

Go deeperArrowOct 4, 2019

Study: Flavored tobacco products are a gateway to regular use

First use of flavored e-cigarettes, cigars, hookah, and smokeless tobacco products can place young adults and adults at risk of regular tobacco use. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Youths and young adults are likely to continue using various tobacco products after trying flavored products like menthol or mint, according to a new study from JAMA Network.

Driving the news: Popular e-cigarette startup Juul announced last week a halt in its flavored vape products, signaling further cooperation with the FDA. Juul banned all flavors except mint, its most popular flavor.

Go deeperArrowOct 23, 2019

Regulatory gaps are exacerbating the youth vaping crisis

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The delay in implementing comprehensive regulations for e-cigarettes has contributed to a growing crisis of vaping-related illnesses and deaths across the U.S. and poses particular risks to young adults.

The big picture: E-cigarette use by American teenagers has surged, and the dangers are heightened by unsafe black market vaping devices and THC cartridges. But a recent flurry of regulatory activity by states looks set to continue, with federal action following shortly.

Go deeperArrowOct 11, 2019