As Juul limited the access of their fruity and savory vape flavors, counterfeit vape products in the US skyrocketed. Juul pursued legal action and began to locate and serve legal notice to counterfeit producers stateside. Chinese manufacturers, however, took advantage of the situation and began flooding the market with compatible pods containing unknown recipes in a plethora of flavors.
Shops have largely directed their business to compatible products as they begin to purchase less and less Juul branded products. Additional to this, Juul created some bad blood between their company and shop owners as they began to put conditions upon the wholesale of their products to shops; conditions as such that required shop owners to arrange their shops a certain way to display their products, or requiring that the shop does not carry any compatible products.
Well, if you’re buying the compatible products made by Chinese companies, you’re saving quite a bit of money. The prices of the compatible Juul products are about half of what the Juul Brand products cost. Juul products, being nicotine salt, have an increased possibility of the user undergoing nicotine poisoning. This is because of the additive benzoic acid in the liquid, which allows the user to inhale more nicotine without feeling the effects of nicotine when the user has inhaled too much and allows the user to absorb nicotine at a faster rate.
The chemical makeup of liquid in the “knock-off” Juul pods, and Juul compatible pods are unknown. Since the manufacturers are in China, it also makes it difficult to ascertain this information and to hold the brands accountable or responsible for any issues caused by the distribution and use of these products.
These counterfeit product producers do not have established company standards. Some counterfeit producers had been raided in China, and they were found to have unsanitary facility conditions. If the manufacturing conditions are likely to be unsanitary for these knock-off Juul pods, what can be said for the chemicals contained in the e-liquid within the pods? No one can validate with certainty that these pods are being filled with legitimate e-liquid. Therefore, we cannot determine the health risks associated with these counterfeit and compatible Juul Pods.
We can look at events that transpired with Juul in 2018 as an example of how the market reacts to a reduction in the availability of flavors. Consumers will seek alternative methods of obtaining flavored products. In order to obtain a flavor that is preferable for them, consumers will go so far as obtaining counterfeit Chinese products of which the exact origin and consistency are unknown.
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