The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Federal Trade Commission are cracking down on items that are labeled to look like kid-friendly foods but contain tobacco products.
According to the release, the warning letters outlined examples of the products being sold through online outlets, including "One Mad Hit Juice Box", which resembles children's apple juice boxes, including Tree Top-brand juice boxes; "Vape Heads Sour Smurf Sauce", resembling War Heads candy; and "V'Nilla Cookies & Milk", resembling Nilla Wafer and Golden Oreo Cookies.
The warning letters sent Tuesday are part of the FDA's Youth Tobacco Prevention Plan, which is aiming to decrease youth access to tobacco products.
From January 2012 to April 2017, over 8,200 incidents of children under 6-years-old ingesting e-cigarette or liquid nicotine products occurred, according to the National Poison Data System.
Children are at greater risk because exposure to the nicotine in e-liquid products, even in small amounts, could lead to death from cardiac arrest, as well as seizure, coma, and respiratory failure.
For children old enough to understand, explain to them that these products can be risky and shouldn't be touched. The agency says children could mistakenly drink the liquids, which are intended for use in e-cigarettes and vaping devices.
E-Cigarette packages that look like candies prompted warnings from US officials, who are intensifying their crackdown on e-cigarette products that they say are geared to entice children.
"Nicotine is highly toxic, and these letters make clear that marketing methods that put kids at risk of nicotine poisoning are unacceptable", said Acting FTC Chairman Maureen K. Ohlhausen.
Packaging for e-liquid shown with food products, such as juice, cookies or candy, to show how the e-liquid packaging mimics the food product packaging. "These are preventable accidents that have the potential to result in serious harm or even death".
The latest warnings come one week after the FDA sent forty warning letters to companies on the sale of tobacco products to minors, particularly those made by Juul Labs Inc.