Camden: Settlement based on bite quota
That’s not to say they aren’t already, but stores selling e-cigarette supplies should now be careful not to register customers.
The state’s recent settlement with Juul, the provider of nicotine-containing vaping liquids, comes with more than its reasonable $22 million price tag for marketing its products to the state’s youth. No guilt was admitted, which is how the settlements work, but there is more than just a cash payment involved.
It also requires the company to conduct “secret shopper” programs at e-cigarette retailers in all 39 counties of the state at the rate of 25 “pricks” per month over two years, ensuring that the person behind the counter verifies the age of the buyer and respects the legal limits on the number of devices and modules.
These will be in addition to checks carried out by the State Liquor and Cannabis Authority.
Announcing the settlement last month, Attorney General Bob Ferguson accused Juul of taking a page from the marketing playbook Big Tobacco has used for decades to get young people hooked on its products. But there was a decidedly 21st century twist, with flavors like mango and creme brulee.
Juul, it should be noted, has played a role in Washington’s legislative campaigns for the past three years, with around $120,000 in contributions to lawmakers and political caucus committees on both sides. The Leadership Fund, which backs Senate Republicans and the Reagan Fund, which backs House Republicans, each raised $30,000; the Truman Fund, the coffers of House Democrats, took $25,000. The Kennedy Fund, which supports Senate Democrats, got a relatively paltry $5,000.