New Campaign Fights Unhealthy Marketing to Kids

marketingAlcohol and tobacco use are dangerous for your health. It’s alarming to think that local stores market alcohol and tobacco products specifically to children—but this fact is all too true. That’s why the Healthy Stores for a Healthy Community campaign was recently launched throughout California.

The goal of the campaign is to change the way community stores market unhealthy products, particularly to kids. Health and human service agencies and public health departments throughout the state will work together to increase public awareness and help make our stores healthier.

To start, over 7,300 surveys were conducted in various retail outlets—from discount stores to supermarkets to liquor stores—in all 58 California counties. Here are some results from our home turf of Alameda County:

  • Cigarettes85% of stores in Alameda County sell cheap candy, mint, or liquor-flavored non-cigarette tobacco products
  • 36% of stores sell tobacco products within 1,000 feet of schools
  • Almost 64% of stores sell alcohol
  • Almost 88% of stores offer alcopops, or sweet alcohol drinks, targeted at youth
  • 59% of stores sell sugary drinks at check out

According to, too many young people today are becoming addicted to tobacco, and the results are showing up in their mouths through bad breath, stained teeth, bone loss, shrinking gums, mouth sores, decreased senses, and more. In addition, smoking or using smokeless chewing tobacco can make you four times more likely to develop oral cancers!

BubbleGumCigarettesParents have a lot of influence on what their children purchase. Talk to them about the messages you see on storefront windows and product labels.

Related articles:

The Eroding Effects of Sour Candy
4 Surprising Facts about Soda
5 Environments that Could Be Feeding Childhood Obesity

Photos: Healthy Stores for a Healthy Community

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