By Rebecca Mayo, J.D.
The FTC is collecting data from a number of e-cigarette manufacturers as part of a new study relating to the sales, advertising, and promotional methods of e-cigarette manufacturers.
In an effort to assist the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), policy makers, and the public better understand the rapidly growing e-cigarette market, the FTC has announced that it is conducting a study of the sales, advertising, and promotional methods used by e-cigarette manufacturers. According to the FTC, the study will complement similar FTC studies on cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products. The FTC has already issued orders requesting information from six e-cigarette manufacturers.
Orders. The FTC issued orders to JUUL Labs, Inc., R.J. Reynolds Vapor Company, Fontem US, Inc, Logic Technology Development LLC, Nu Mark LLC, and NJOY, LLC. The companies have until January 2, 2020 to file a Special Report containing the requested information with the FTC. The orders requested information on the sales, advertising and promotional practices in the U.S. during calendar years 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018. Specifically, the orders request information about the characteristics of the companies’ e-cigarette products, such as flavors. They also request annual sales and marketing data as well as advertising information about affiliate programs, influencer marketing, and college campus programs.
Marketing data. The orders specifically request information about payments made for product placement in movies, television shows, video games, magazines and any other publications. They also request information about the websites and social media accounts used to advertise the products and whether any mechanisms were used to deter persons under the age of 18 from visiting the website or social media account. Additionally, information is requested relating to if and how visitors were able to purchase products through online sites and what mechanisms were used to deter persons under the age of 18 from purchasing or accepting delivery of the products.
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