The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is taking a new approach in its marketing battle against the vaping industry.
Launching its “new and improved” Anti-Vaping Youth Campaign titled “The Real Cost,” the FDA intends to provide the rebooted initiative additional spark in keeping vaping products away from minors.
FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb called the previous initiative “irreverent,” according to nbcnews.com.
As part of the new FDA Real Cost plan, the administration will expand its team of anti-vaping experts to scour social media sites popular with teenagers, with intentions of re-routing them to the FDA’s new message of caution.
“We are acting on very clear science that there’s an epidemic on the way,” Gottlieb said. “We’re in possession of data that shows a disturbingly sharp rise in the number of teens using e-cigarettes in just the last year.”
But is it accurate data? Or data the agency finds convenient to its cause?
It’s a fair question.
After all, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2017 reported the percentage of smoking teens dropped sharply from 2011-16. The CDC credited the advent of vaping for the near 50 percent decline. During the same timeframe, vaping rose from 1.5 percent to 16 percent three years ago.
Since the peak of teen vaping in 2015, usage among minors has steadily taken a step back.
In 2016, teen vaping dropped to 11.3 percent and smoking, over the identical time span, slipped from 9.3 percent to 8.0 percent.
Still, the FDA felt it needed to do something. Apparently anything — including resorting to hyperbole and exaggeration to create panic for an epidemic that doesn’t actually exist…
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