Thu, Oct 10, 2019 - Page 10 News List

Alibaba halts US e-cigarette component sales

Reuters

Chinese e-commerce firm Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (阿里巴巴) yesterday said that it is to stop selling e-cigarette components in the US amid growing regulatory scrutiny, and reports of lung disease and some deaths linked to vaping.

The move follows announcements by Kroger Co and Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc this week that they would stop selling e-cigarettes at their stores, in line with a similar decision by Walmart Inc.

Alibaba said that it already had a long-standing policy in place to not sell complete e-cigarette products in the US.

Vaping products have been linked to a mysterious lung illness that is reported to have led to 18 deaths as of last week, with the number of confirmed and probable cases of the condition exceeding 1,000, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported.

Alibaba said that listings for products such as box mods, vape pens, herbal vapors, heat not burn devices, and empty pod cartridges would not be displayed for users in the US.

While Juul Labs Inc dominates the North American market for pod e-cigarettes, many reports of death and injury have been tied to makeshift brands with no identifiable owner.

The most prominent, Dank Vapes, was linked to 24 patients with lung illness, a New England Journal of Medicine study showed.

The products contained tetrahydrocannabinol, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

Prior to the suspension, buyers could easily purchase devices, component parts and packaging from sites such as Alibaba or Amazon.com Inc to make their own counterfeit vaping devices.

Amazon took down vape paraphernalia last month, although it did not specify the exact products it removed.

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