A public health framework for the regulation of marketing
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Cross-sectional, longitudinal, and experimental studies have found a link between youth exposure to cigarette marketing and youth initiation of smoking. These decisive research findings led to regulations of cigarette marketing to youth—including no television or radio ads, prohibitions on the use of cartoons, bans on transit and billboard advertisements, and disallowing tobacco brand sponsorships of sporting events or concerts. Similar products that may cause more harm than benefits include alcohol, electronic cigarettes, and opioids. We review the evidence linking problematic use of these products with exposure to marketing and discuss standards for assessing the potential harmfulness of marketing. We next address how public health agencies might apply regulatory principles to these harmful products similar to those applied to cigarette advertising, in the advancement of public health.
KeywordsTobacco E-cigarettes Marketing Public health regulations Adolescent health
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (R33 DA035640 and R03CA206551) of the National Institute of Health and the Food and Drug Administration Center for Tobacco Products (CTP) supported the authors during their work on this manuscript. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institute of Drug Abuse, National Institute of Health, or the Food and Drug Administration.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
All of the authors declare no conflicts of interest.
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