OHA; illegal sales of little cigars or ‘cigarillos’ more than doubled

OREGON — One type of tobacco product is increasing in popularity among youth across Oregon, according to the state.

However, legally minors are not supposed to be getting a hold of them in the first place.

They’re called cigarillos or “little cigars.”

They’re cheap and are popular with kids because of their fruity flavors like “tropical fusion” and “boozy mango.”

The Oregon Health Authority says illegal sales of the tobacco product has more than doubled in the past year.

It says more than one in four stores it inspected sold them illegally to minors.

“Being able to get one at a time is easier than buying a pack of them… like cigarettes,” said Shawn Martinez, Josephine County Prevention and Treatment Services Coordinator. “Parents need to be aware, checking backpacks, or having conversations with their youth about the dangers of smoking.”

The OHA says more than half of Oregon stores advertise them for under 1 dollar.

Martinez believes that the easy access to the product is what’s contributing to its popularity.

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