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Legislature Considers Ban On Flavored Tobacco

Ruby de Luna
01/31/2011

State lawmakers will consider a bill to ban the sale of flavored tobacco products to youth. As KUOW's Ruby de Luna reports, these are products that don't look like typical cigarettes and are attractive to young people.

TRANSCRIPT

Many of the flavored tobacco products are packaged like gum or candy. They appear in bright colors and come in flavors like peach, strawberry or grape. They melt in the mouth like candy or breath strips and they do contain tobacco. Public health officials want to make it illegal to sell these products to minors because they make it easy for young people to get hooked on tobacco.

In Washington state, youth smoking has not dropped in recent years. It's estimated that 45 kids start smoking each day. Federal law bans the sale of flavored cigarettes to minors. But the law doesn't cover these other types of tobacco products. If approved, Washington would join New York City and Maine to make it illegal to sell flavored tobacco products to youth. The bill will go before the House Health Care and Wellness Committee this afternoon. A similar bill has been introduced in the state Senate.

I'm Ruby de Luna, KUOW News.

© Copyright 2011, KUOW

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