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US endorses tobacco pouches as less risky than cigarettes

WASHINGTON — For the first time, U.S. health regulators have endorsed a type of smokeless tobacco as a less harmful alternative to smoking.

Under Tuesday’s decision, Swedish Match will be able to advertise that its tobacco pouches carry a lower risk of cancer, bronchitis and other diseases than cigarettes.

It’s the first time the Food and Drug Administration has endorsed a tobacco product as a way to reduce the deadly impact of smoking.

Swedish Match has sold its tobacco pouches in the U.S. for more than a decade.

Matthew Perrone, The Associated Press