A recent Google search on Florida tobacco news brought up an interesting article. The Sun Sentinel gave a headline that stated “Jupiter might ask stores to stop selling flavored tobacco products to minors.” Might? According to this article, it is legal in Florida to sell flavored tobacco products to persons under the age of 18. It is still illegal to sell cigarettes to those under 18, but minors can buy cigarillos, smokeless tobacco products, hookah tobacco and bidis (thin cigarette alternatives). Tobacco is tobacco. It is still harmful whether the person is under or over 18.
Tobacco companies have been targeting young tobacco users for years, at least this is what internal tobacco industry documents “strongly suggest.” These young users are “replacement smokers” for the 443,000 who die each year in the United States and over 5 million who die worldwide.
Did you know that the tobacco industry spends more marketing in Florida than in any other state? About $1 million annually.
Did you know in Florida about 70 young people under 18 become regular smokers every day?
Did you know that 1.1% of middle school students and 5.1% of high school students in Florida are regular cigarette smokers, according to the 2010 Florida Youth Tobacco Survey? Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids website states 19.5% or 3.4 million high school students are current smokers. Kids consumed 800 million packs of cigarettes in the past year which is approximately $2.0 BILLION in sales revenue.
Did you know that 0.8% of middle school students and 2.8% of high school students in Florida are regular smokeless tobacco users? In the U.S. 15.0% currently use smokeless tobacco, according to Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.
Did you know that every 6.5 seconds a current or former smoker dies, according to the World Health Organization (WHO)? In the time it will take you to read this information, approximately 18-25 smokers will have died.
The town MIGHT consider asking retailers to stop selling flavored tobacco products to minors?