Juul asked the High Court of Justice Thursday to block the health ministry from banning the import and sale of e-cigarettes such as Juul's containing more than 20 milligrams of nicotine unless officials can justify their decision.
The petition came only two days after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, acting in his capacity as Minister of Health, signed an order that would trigger the ban after 15 days, saying that such e-cigarettes "posed a serious public health risk".
Juul e-cigarettes contain 59 milligrams of nicotine per milliliter of liquid, well above the range of six to thirty for other e-cigarettes. But the company replies that the nicotine content in the product is not higher than for regular cigarettes and less harmful to health.
In his petition, the American company claimed that the ministry had "worked in the dark, according to hidden agendas, while reinforcing the position of tobacco manufacturers versus the alternative offered by the petitioners." It said the ban caused a "fatal financial blow" to the company.
Until now, Israel was the only other country outside the United States and Great Britain where Juul could freely market his trendy e-cigarette, which looks like a USB and comes in flavors like mango and creme brulee. However, Britain limits the nicotine content to 20 milligrams.
The company told the court that the hearings that led to the ban violated all rules and obligations imposed on a government agency & # 39 ;, and that the ministry officials had already decided before the hearings were held.
"This order is invalid by any administrative standard, because it is only aimed at the submitter and his product, leaving the door open to competitors to sell products similar to those of the petitioner and to do what they want," said Juul.