FDA Issues Warning to Tobacco Manufacturers for Illegal Sales of Flavored Cigarettes

Four manufacturers were issued a warning for labeling the cigarettes as cigars.

The FDA has issued warning letters to four tobacco manufacturers for selling flavored cigarettes that are labeled as little cigars or cigars, according to its news release. Swisher International Inc., Cheyenne International LLC, Prime Time International Co., and Southern Cross Tobacco Company Inc. all violated the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act by doing so, according to the agency.

"Flavored cigarettes appeal to kids and disguise the bad taste of tobacco, but they are just as addictive as regular tobacco products and have the same harmful health effects," said Mitch Zeller, director of FDA's Center for Tobacco Products. "Because about 90 percent of adult daily smokers smoked their first cigarette by the age of 18, continued enforcement of the ban on cigarettes with characterizing flavors is vital to protect future generations from a lifetime of addiction."

The agency said the products are likely to be offered to someone as cigarettes based on presentation, appearance, and packaging. Having come to this conclusion, the agency has also determined the products are adulterated because they contain a natural or artificial characterizing flavor.

FDA expects these products to remain available for purchase while it works with the manufacturers.

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