The US International Trade Commission has banned Philip Morris International and Altria from selling and importing the IQOS tobacco device, writes CNBC.
The commission found the IQOS tobacco heating system infringing two patents from Reynolds American, a British American Tobacco subsidiary that manufactures the Glo tobacco heating system, and the Vype and Vuse vapes. Philip Morris is the developer and manufacturer of IQOS, and Altria sells it.
As the publication clarifies, the ban on the import and sale of IQOS will come into force two months after the administrative check is completed and the document is signed by US President Joe Biden.
A Philip Morris spokesman told the publication that the company plans to appeal the decision, while an Altria spokesman said the two companies are working together on contingency plans.
Altria received a license from Philip Morris to sell IQOS in the US two years ago, but the company began developing it more than a decade ago, before Philip Morris International spun off into a separate company. British American Tobacco filed similar claims against Philip Morris International in Greece and the UK, but the courts in these countries sided with the defendant.