Following a press release by Elfbar which gave the impression that the manufacturer has formed a partnership with the American Cancer Society (ACS), the latter sent a cease-and-desist letter demanding that Elfbar remove any references to the group.
The saga started when in January Elfbar announced a program called the “Lighthouse Guardian Program” which it said was aimed at preventing use of its products by minors. The said program included a section where one could make a 10-cent donation to the ACS every time they clicked a button on its website labeled “Join to Light.” Once clicked, the button turns to “Thanks For Lighting Up” and opens a box where a user is asked to enter their email address.
Discussing the program in a press release on the program, Elfbar CEO Victor Xiao said that the the amount donated to ACS would total “over ten thousand dollars.” However the ACS responded by saying that it wanted nothing to do with the manufacturer and sent a cease-and-desist letter demanding that any reference to it is removed immediately.
“The American Cancer Society does not partner with or accept funds from tobacco companies and has sent a cease and desist letter to Elf Bar to prevent further public deceit,” said Timothy Phillips, the chief legal officer for the ACS, in a statement to Stat News. He added that cease-and-desist letter demanded that the company “immediately cease all use of the American Cancer Society name that falsely implies association with ACS,” including removing all mention of the group.
ElfBar’s UK slip up
Meanwhile in the UK, an investigation by the Mail found that one of Elfbar’s models, the ‘600’ line, contained at least 50% over the legal limit of allowed nicotine. A closer look into the products conducted by the Mail on three flavours purchased at Morrisons, Sainsbury and Tesco’s branches in London, Derby and Sheffield, found they contained between 3ml and 3.2ml. The nicotine limit allowed in the UK is 2ml, of which the maximum strength should be 2%.
When approached, the Chinese manufacturer ‘wholeheartedly apologised’, saying that this was not intentional. “We found out that some batches of the Elfbar product have been overfilled in the UK,” said a spokesperson for Elfbar. “It appears that e-liquid tank sizes, which are standard in other markets [such as the US], have been inadvertently fitted to some of our UK products. We wholeheartedly apologise for the inconvenience this has caused.”
Despite the apology, Tesco removed the line from its stores, and Morrisons also launched its own investigation into the product. The UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) highlighted that ELFBAR was taking the required actions to rectify the situation. “We are aware that ELFBAR has made an announcement that it has found that some of its products have entered the UK with 3ml capacity e-liquid tanks, which whilst standard in many parts of the world, are not so here.