Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody has filed complaints against two companies selling vaping products in the state, accusing them of marketing to minors and failing to properly verify their customers’ age.
“The investigation showed the defendants used marketing tactics including labeling similar to some children breakfast cereal products and video games giveaways to entice children to buy their addictive products,” Moody said in a video provided to NBC 6. “As a mother, I’m angered and appalled at this blatant attempt to attract minors to addictive products.”
The Attorney General’s office said it is still investigating 19 other companies – five of them based in South Florida. It’s part of an investigation that launched in October to crackdown on vaping use among minors in the state.
Earlier this year, an NBC 6 Investigation found even though local stores are required to check ID when selling vaping devices, that doesn’t always happen and the state is not policing stores to make sure they do.
Records obtained by NBC 6 show the Attorney General’s office has received dozens of comments and complaints related to vaping in over a year. Many of them, from parents claiming vaping devices were sold to their kids. One wrote: “I am the parent of a 17 year old high school senior addicted to nicotine through vaping.” Another one said: “The company sold vape products to my 15 year old child. They have an age requirement, but somehow she got around that and ordered the product."
The Attorney General said the action against the two companies seeks, in part, to prevent the marketing of their products to minors, including a ban on the use of cartoons in the advertising of products that contain nicotine.
In a statement, Lizard Juice said: “We categorically deny all of these claims. We work really hard to try to protect the industry and we look forward to our day in court.”
NBC 6 reached out to Monster Vape Labs and attorneys that have represented the company but we have not received a response.