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June Newsletter

Using Store Observation Data for Point of Sale Policy Change
People often ask how to use store observation data once it has been collected. Store observations (also referred to as store audits or assessments) allow you to collect data about what is happening at stores in your community and use this information to educate the public, policymakers, and youth about the deceptive marketing tactics used by the tobacco industry. The video below highlights examples of point of sale tobacco control policy change from Minnesota, San Francisco, and New York City.  
Find more information on store observations and POS policy change
Using Store Observations for Point of Sale Tobacco Control Policy Change
New Resources
Point of Sale Report to the Nation:
Realizing the Power of States and Communities to Change the Tobacco Retail and Policy Landscape

This report provides updates from ASPiRE's research on retail tobacco policy activity, tobacco retailer density, and product availability and price in states and communities across the U.S, as well as information from interviews with local and state tobacco control program leaders about policy innovations, barriers they have encountered, growth and changes in the overall tobacco retail policy environment. 
Highlights from the report include: 
  • Prior to the FDA finalizing its deeming rule90% of states had established a minimum legal sales age for e-cigarettes and 45% had banned self-service e-cigarette displays
  • Over 30% of sample jurisdictions established retailer licensing beyond that required by states
  • Communities in 42 states have conducted or are currently conducting retail tobacco assessments to raise awareness and inform policy, and most of these efforts have incorporated STARS, the Standardized Tobacco Assessment for Retail Settings. 
  • lack of political will and tobacco industry interference remain major barriers to point of sale policy activity
  • Despite barriers, retail tobacco policy activity has dramatically increased since 2012

More Policy News and Research's latest "News and Research Roundup," a monthly summary of the latest POS research, reports, and policy news is out.  Highlights:
New POS Trend to Watch: Digital Couponing 

The tobacco industry spends over 91% of its marketing dollars at the point of sale, including expenditures on coupons to reduce the retail cost of tobacco. They know that price is one of the most powerful influences on tobacco use.  In 2013, the tobacco industry spent $32.2 million on coupons for smokeless tobacco, and over $248.8 million on coupons for cigarettes, which is up from the $239.6 million spent on cigarettes in 2012. 

Now, as detailed in “Cigarette couponing goes mobile”, a new article published online in the journal Tobacco Control, the tobacco industry is promoting the use of a different kind of coupon. Altria and Reynolds American have both started offering digital coupons (e.g. $1.50 off one pack) that users can redeem using a smartphone.  Read more.
Tobacco 21 News and Research

Localities that have raised the minimum legal sale age to 21 in the past month include:
State activity: The Illinois SenateMassachusetts Senate, and New Jersey Senate have all approved bills that would raise the age statewide

Research: Raising the Legal Age of Tobacco Sales, American Journal of Preventive Medicine
  • A nationally representative survey showed that nearly two-thirds of people in the US support raising the age for sales of cigarettes, and support for raising the age to 21 was higher than support for raising the age to 19 or 20. Support was high across all US regions, ranging from 59.6% to 73.1%. Race, age, and trust in government partially predicted support. Participants who were older than 21, non-white, or who had higher trust in government were more likely to support the policy.
Point of Sale Health Warnings 
Effect of Pictorial Cigarette Pack Warnings on Changes in Smoking Behavior: A Randomized Clinical Trial, JAMA Internal Medicine

Smokers who received cigarette packs with pictorial warnings were 29% more likely to attempt to quit smoking during the trial than smokers who received cigarette packs with text-only warnings. Those who received pictorial warnings were also more likely to have quit smoking for at least 7 days prior to the end of the trial, and pictorial warnings also increased intentions to quit, behaviors of cutting back, and successfully quitting over four weeks.

News story
: Gruesome Cigarette Pack Images Seem to Help Some People Quit, HealthDay
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