Imported Cigarettes Draw Teens
Bidis, tiny flavored cigarettes from India, are luring a new generation of young smokers to tobacco and raising alarms among public health officials and anti-smoking groups.
In a new study scheduled to be published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, Massachusetts state public health researchers will report high rates of bidi use among urban youth there, a pattern of use that experts say likely reflects use elsewhere also.
While the study's results are embargoed until publication, Massachusetts Public Health Commissioner Howard Koh said the findings point to a serious new threat to anti-smoking efforts among youth in grades seven to 12. "The study found that the prevalence of bidi use was disturbingly high," Koh said. "This is catching hold."