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Widespread tobacco agriculture has created many challenges; health risks to the farmers (e.g. green tobacco sickness), irreparable damage to the environment in tobacco-growing countries (e.g. widespread deforestation, vegetation loss, and pollution), and child labour practices.
Tobacco companies have used tobacco farming to undermine tobacco control measures around the world, arguing that tobacco control measures destroy the livelihoods of small-scale tobacco farmers. This is in contrast to a growing body of evidence that suggests that tobacco farmers are often trapped in a generational cycle of poverty which fuels child labour, with the majority of profits from tobacco farming going to leaf buying companies and cigarette manufacturers.
Tobacco companies have also tied tobacco farming, and efforts to eliminate child labour, into their Corporate Social Responsibility agenda and partnerships with government agencies, attempting to present themselves as good corporate citizens and obscuring the harms caused by tobacco.

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