By Vanessa Knevelbaard
Juuling has become a new trend among young people as well as college-aged students like those who go to Cuesta.
The device itself looks like a normal flash drive, but it is something entirely different. Students and others use this product without knowing what’s really going into their bodies. Researchers have found that one Juul pod has the same amount of nicotine as one pack of cigarettes, plus a few other chemicals that make it so addicting.
It’s the new addiction for millions of teens across the country, including students who attend Cuesta College.
“I first saw a Juul when I was with my friend,” said Cuesta student Canon Hansen. “He told me it helped him stop chewing and it’s better than cigarettes. So, I went to buy one to help me stop chewing and smoking thinking it was better, but I am just as addicted to it as I was to the other things.”
With the different flavor pods, the buzz, and how it claims to be an alternative to smoking, kids are spending tons of money to get their hands on one of these. The Juul device itself is $50 and the pods come separate which are $25 each pack and carries four pods.
Along with that, there are different flavors of pods offer to buyers including mint, mango, crème Brulee and so much more.
“I think the flavoring is what really gets to me, because it tastes so good and gives you a buzz like a cigarette, so I’m obviously going to go for the one that tastes better.” Said another Cuesta student Bella Bouma. Recently, her mother texted her saying, “Just watched a Today Show episode about Juuling/vaping…It’s not actually keeping adults from smoking but instead causing kids to be addicted.”
Allegations have been raised against big tobacco companies regarding the realities of the product they are marketing to young people.
“The tobacco company packaged nicotine another way and made it cool. People (mostly kids) are more addicted than ever,” Bouma said.
Because of these claims, Juul released a statement in response.
“We are a mission driven company seeking to eliminate cigarettes by providing a true alternative for adult smokers. We stand by our mission to serve as a true alternative to combusted cigarettes for adult smokers. We will continue to respond as necessary to unfounded allegations,” according to Juul.
A Juul spokesperson claims that Juul are on track to manufacture 20 million pods in a month and are expected to double into 40 million in the next six months.
Men’s Fitness magazine claims that Juuls is the “iPhone” of e-cigarettes with the marketing tactics and look they are using.
Ages for Juuling are ranging from middle school into college. Kids are getting expelled from their schools for Juuling, it seems children are starting Juuling recreationally to look ‘cool,’ but this is leading to heavy addiction.
Juul claims that to be the healthy alternative to smoking, but kids’ recreational use is gradually increasing, resulting to actual smoking.
Juuls can be now found in gas stations and convenience stores. College kids are now starting to sell Juul pods to make money. The constant debate between the underage purchasing, underage addiction and the true health risks Juuls may cause are still under investigation.