Federal appeals court pauses ban of Juul e-cigarettes

A federal appeals court on Friday issued a temporary stay of a ban announced one day earlier by regulators, which would prohibit the sale of Juul electronic cigarettes nationwide, court records show.

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In an order filed in court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit stayed a marketing denial order issued one day earlier by the Food and Drug Administration. The FDA order required that Juul Labs Inc. stop selling and distributing its products in the U.S.

Judges noted Friday that the court’s order was aimed at giving it time to consider an emergency motion filed by Juul that aims to allow the vaping company to continue selling e-cigarettes. Friday’s order “should not be construed in any way as a ruling on the merits of that motion,” judges wrote.

On Thursday, FDA officials said they were barring the sale of Juul products after determining that there was not enough evidence to show that the products benefit public health, a requirement for companies that sell e-cigarettes, according to The Associated Press.

Regulators noted Thursday that they had “not received clinical information to suggest an immediate hazard associated with the use of the JUUL device or JUULpods.”

On Thursday, FDA Commissioner Robert Califf said the agency’s action showed “further progress on the FDA’s commitment to ensuring that all e-cigarette and electronic nicotine delivery system products currently being marketed to consumers meet our public health standards.”

“The agency has dedicated significant resources to review products from the companies that account for most of the U.S. market,” he said in a statement. “We recognize these make up a significant part of the available products and many have played a disproportionate role in the rise in youth vaping.”

Juul petitioned Friday morning for relief from the FDA order, calling it extraordinary and unlawful, The Wall Street Journal reported. The company also questioned the handling of the announcement.

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