Posted in: Odd News

Candy Cigarettes Land Minnesota Shop Owner In Hot Water

Lynden's Soda Fountain

St. Paul, MN – A shop owner found herself facing a $500 citation by authorities if she continued to sell candy cigarettes and cartoon lighters in her store.

Although the tiny sticks of sugar were once popular with children, many states have sought to ban the items from reaching the sales counter. According to The Associated Press, Lynden’s Soda Fountain owner Tobi Lynden was selling the treats quite steadily until government officials threatened her with a fine.

To stay in good graces with authorities, Lynden decided to remove the offending products from her store shelves. While she doesn’t necessarily agree with the ordinance, complying with demands is much easier than battling a $500 citation.

The St. Paul ordinance also prohibits the sale of candy cigars and bubble gum made to look like chewing tobacco. Although the store has carried these items since it opened in April, Lynden says she has since pulled the offending items from the racks.

“We had no idea. We don’t want to get on the bad side of St. Paul,” Lynden told the Star Tribune. “We weren’t trying to promote smoking or tobacco use of any kind.”

While most government officials don’t wander the landscape in search of stores selling candy cigarettes, Lynden said a customer complaint brought authorities to her door. In order to escape the misdemeanor citation, Lynden said she was forced to remove the products.

In her defense, the Lynden’s Soda Fountain owner said that almost all of the purchases of the sugary contraband were made by adults who enjoyed the treats when they were kids.

“We’re a tiny little soda fountain shop that specializes in vintage candies and vintage sodas. We never had any issues with it. People were always happy to see them,” Lynden explained to CBS Minnesota.

The St. Paul ordinance against such potentially offensive treats was spearheaded by a group of teenagers working alongside the Association for Nonsmokers-Minnesota. The organization spends quite a bit of time lobbying against tobacco products.

While demand is still there, Lynden said she has no choice but to refuse sale of candy cigarettes to anyone with a need to puff on a stick of sugar.

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Comments

11 Responses to “Candy Cigarettes Land Minnesota Shop Owner In Hot Water”

  1. Heather Johnson

    "The organization spends quite a bit of time lobbying against tobacco products." Hey, members of the Association for Nonsmokers-Minnesota, sugar isn't a tobacco product. Why don't you use your time and effort to fight actual tobacco products.

  2. Joel Antkowiak

    Weak minds in office make for some really ridiculous laws being made just because of a little pressure from a few morons.

  3. James K Young

    ok so if its adults who are buying most of the candy cigs-then why not put up a sign "must be 18 or older to buy candy cigarettes cigar gum or big league chew-man what's the world coming to-? I loved these as a kid and I don't smoke and never did but for a few times to check it out-i dident like real smoking-let the kids be kids-they grow up way to fast these days-is there anything to be left for future generation? or are we going to outlaw everything we may not like till its all a bunch of tastless colorless useless nothing-but…. its legal

  4. Rodney Belair

    If I had a spare $500 I would mail it to her to keep them on the shelf…
    Mail me some so I can give them to my grandkids please…

  5. Mary Green Karr

    I enjoy the candy sticks. After all, they already eliminated the red spot on the end. If they weren't in the look-a-like boxes, no one would even think twice.

  6. Bill Boyd

    What nut jobs. Although the program at CDC I worked for provided smoking-cessation funds to several regional organizations, their staff had a droll sense of humor; they loved it when I supplied candy cigarettes at the national grantee meeting my program hosted.