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WASHINGTON -- An attempt by the Canadian parliament to ban flavored cigarillos is being criticized from members of the U.S. Congress, who argue it essentially prohibits burley tobacco exports to Canada and violates trade laws, The Wall Street Journal reported.
The pending bill seeks to ban companies from selling tobacco products with cherry, milk and chocolate flavorings, due to concerns the flavors tempt children to smoke, the report stated.
U.S. Senators and Representatives, as well as business lobbies, argue the bill would ban the export of burley tobacco, which can contain cocoa flavoring ingredients to mask its taste.
The group, including Republicans Rep. Ed Whitfield and Sen. Jim Bunning of Kentucky, said the bill unfairly discriminates against U.S. tobacco growers and "will destroy family-owned small businesses," according to the report.
Senator Lincoln Davis, a Democrat from Tennessee, wrote a letter to Canada's minister of industry stating he is concerned the bill would violate the North American Free Trade Agreement and certain regulations of the World Trade Organization.
Ottawa to Prohibit Candy-Flavored Cigarillos