E-cigarette behemoth Juul announced Thursday that it was pulling mint - the favorite flavor for many teens - off the shelves amid a growing vaping health crisis that has claimed dozens of lives and sickened thousands.
The Journal of the American Medical Association study found that more than half of teenagers who vape use Juul e-cigarettes, and its mint pods were the number one choice of high school students.
It stopped selling popular fruit and dessert flavours in stores a year ago, and last month, stopped selling them online, too.
Earlier, the company replaced its CEO and pledged to stop advertising its products. For years, Juul has argued that its e-cigarettes are meant to help adult smokers switch to a less harmful nicotine product. The company subsequently shuttered its Facebook and Instagram accounts.
The San Francisco company still sells the menthol flavor and two tobacco flavors.
The decision to suspend flavored sales comes amid a nationwide vaping crisis that has claimed at least 33 lives and injured almost 1,500 others as of October 15, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Mint and fruit flavours are still available in Canada and have not been pulled from Juul's Canadian website store.
Fruit, candy, dessert and other flavored e-cigarettes have been targeted due to their appeal to underage users. US federal health officials are expected to soon release plans for removing most vaping flavours from the market, and Juul has said it will support and comply with that government policy. The Food and Drug Administration is considering a ban on flavors, but it has not yet decided whether mint and menthol would be included in the ban.
But a new study released Monday suggests menthol doesn't have the same appeal as mint.
According to a Journal of the American Medical Association study published this week high school students use mint more than any other of Juul's flavors.
Juul is the best-selling e-cigarette brand in the U.S., but has been besieged by legal troubles, including multiple investigations by Congress, federal agencies and several state attorneys general. The company is also being sued by adults and underage Juul users who claim they were addicted to nicotine by the company's products.
E-cigarettes typically heat a solution that contains nicotine, which makes cigarettes and e-cigarettes addictive.