The German government is considering banning chocolate cigarettes, claiming that the confection encourages children to take up smoking in later life.
The country's undersecretary for consumer affairs Matthias Berninger has said that studies show a correlation between children purchasing the sweets and becoming attracted to the habit.
Berninger, who represents the Green Party, has gone so far as to call for confectionery manufacturers to remove the products from supermarket shelves. He has warned the industry that if no action is taken, the government will consider taking legislative steps.
The debate reflects growing public concern over health issues and over the susceptibility of children to marketing and advertising. The confectionery industry especially has come under great scrutiny in recent years.