Altria: Helping Reduce Underage Tobacco Use

As the largest tobacco manufacturer in the U.S., Altria has an important role to play in helping to reduce underage tobacco use.​​

Underage tobacco use is a complex issue for which there is no one simple solution. There is no single reason why young people engage in risky behaviors, such as experimenting with tobacco products, alcohol or drugs. Experts point to a variety of societal, environmental and personal factors that must be considered to help prevent these behaviors, and recommend a multi-faceted approach.

That’s why Altria (a DiversityInc Noteworthy Company) supports a positive youth development approach to help prevent underage tobacco use, emphasize positive relationships and activities, and reduce risk factors. This approach can help kids make healthy decisions and resist a broad range of risky behaviors, such as tobacco use.​​

Grounded in this theory and guided by Altria’s Standards for Underage Tobacco Prevention​, the company invests in programs and creates an annual plan that is informed by societal expectations and comply with legal and regulatory requirements. Altria’s efforts include:

  • supporting programs and organizations that positively influence kids and their decision not to engage in risky behaviors like tobacco use;
  • supporting trade programs, retailer training and legislative efforts that help prevent underage access to tobacco products; and
  • taking steps designed to limit the reach of our brands and marketing materials​ to unintended audiences.
Altria supports a variety of programs and initiatives to help reduce underage access to tobacco products. The company funds organizations that provide kids with the support they need to make healthy decisions, and support resources for parents to help them build the skills they need to help their children succeed and avoid risky behaviors, like using tobacco.
In the late 1990s, Altria entered into agreements with the states that have dramatically changed the way tobacco products are marketed and sold. In June 2009, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was given broad regulatory authority over tobacco products. The company supported this legislation. The law gave the FDA the authority to address a range of tobacco issues, including reducing underage tobacco use, encouraging cessation and communicating the health effects of tobacco products.

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