Corrective Action for Tobacco Retailers to Address Industry Misinformation

August 19th, 2023

New Signage Informs the Public About Industry Deception

Starting July 1, 2023, nearly 200,000 tobacco retailers nationwide were required to begin displaying corrective statements from the tobacco industry in their stores. This order resulted from a 2006 federal court case ruling that major tobacco companies mislead the public about the health risks of smoking and secondhand smoke and the addictive nature of their products.  

The signage aims to inform the public about the harmful effects of smoking and the deceptive marketing practices used by the tobacco industry.  

Examples of the corrective statements include:

  • Smoking kills, on average, 1,200 Americans. Every day.
  • Cigarette companies intentionally designed cigarettes with enough nicotine to create and sustain addiction.
  • All cigarettes cause cancer, lung disease, heart attacks, and premature death – lights, low tar, ultra lights, and naturals. There is no safe cigarette.
  • Altria, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco, Lorillard, and Philip Morris USA intentionally designed cigarettes to make them more addictive.
  • When you smoke, the nicotine actually changes the brain – that’s why quitting is so hard.
  • Children exposed to secondhand smoke are at an increased risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), acute respiratory infections, ear problems, severe asthma, and reduced lung function.

The statements must be prominently displayed in the store, typically near the tobacco point of sale or other high-traffic areas, including store entrances. 

Retailers can play a vital role in raising awareness about the risks associated with tobacco use and the deceptive practices the tobacco industry has used for decades. By displaying these statements at their retail locations, retailers create a sense of transparency and responsibility within the retail industry. This effort supports public health in its efforts to inform consumers about the dangers of smoking. 

Discover ways to protect Coloradans through tobacco policy initiatives and solutions here.