US Customs and Border Protection (CBP), in conjunction with the FDA, have recently seized a shipment of over 33,000 counterfeit and unauthorised e-cigarettes while in transit from China to Texas.
Upwards of 40 separate shipments, valued at an estimated $720,000, were found to contain replicas of Puff Bar products – a brand that already received calls to remove its flavoured disposable e-cigarettes from the market.
In a continued effort to ‘intercept counterfeit or other violative e-cigarettes’ that fail to meet consumer protection standards, the FDA and dedicated border protection officers are pooling their resources.
“Many counterfeit, unapproved or unauthorised products are likely produced in unregulated facilities with unverified ingredients posing a serious health concern to consumers.
“It is especially alarming when these types of counterfeit and unauthorised products find their way into the hands of children.
“We will continue to take every opportunity to work with our partners at the FDA to intercept and seize products that threaten US consumers.”
CBP Port Director Timothy Lemaux.
Through strict enforcement of trading standards and a thorough customs process, the CBP seized over 90,000 counterfeit e-cigarettes in 2020 alone.
However, countless more fake and potentially harmful products find their way into the hands of unknowing vapers, an issue of which the FDA is alarmingly aware.
“This seizure makes clear to tobacco product manufacturers, retailers and importers that the FDA is keeping a close watch on the marketplace and will hold accountable those companies that violate tobacco laws and regulations,” said director of the FDA’s Centre for Tobacco Products, Mitch Zeller J.D.
Judy McMeekin, FDA Associate Commissioner for Regulatory Affairs, assured consumers that investigations will continue into finding and removing dangerous products from the marketplace.
She said: “Protecting American consumers from illicit and especially harmful tobacco products, such as counterfeit…e-cigarettes, is of utmost importance to the FDA.”