The New York Times found that Juul paid thousands to get several studies published in a prominent journal.
NEW YORK CITY — Electronic cigarette giant Juul Labs paid the American Journal of Health Behavior at least $51,000 to publish eleven company-funded studies highlighting the tobacco harm reduction characteristics of their products and designs. According to the Times report, this move comes as Juul struggles to keep its products on the U.S. market.
This edition of the American Journal of Health Behavior also comes as the Food and Drug Administration is prone to keep certain parts of the Juul-dominated closed-system vaping market open and whether the company will be able to survive amid the thousands of lawsuits claiming that the company knowingly sold its vaping products to minors.
“This special issue addresses key topics relating to the public health impact of the use of electronic nicotine delivery devices (ENDS), particularly JUUL-brand ENDS,” writes Drs. Saul Shiffman and Erik M. Augustson in the journal edition’s opening remarks. “Smokers smoke for nicotine but are harmed by the byproducts of combustion.”
“ENDS can play a role in tobacco harm reduction offering a non-combustible alternative source of nicotine for adult smokers who would otherwise continue smoking. Papers presented here estimate the prevalence of ENDS and JUUL use among young and older adults, and document the 12-month smoking trajectories of adults who purchased a JUUL Starter Kit,” the authors note.
Coverage on the special edition of the journal from Business Insider also points out that the study is a part of a million-dollar push for Juul to establish a public influence campaign. Insider cites the Center for Responsive Politics, noting that the company and its assets have spent more than $3.9 million in 2020.
The millions spent in 2020 are, however, dwarfed by more than $40 million in a settlement paid to the state of North Carolina to avoid a very public and controversial jury trial over whether the company knowingly marketed nicotine vaping products to teens.