Counteracting Tobacco Marketing at Retailers in Martin County
September 3, 2018

Over the past three years, volunteers and task force members in Martin County have been working on a pilot project in Martin County with Counter Tools, an organization that provides technology tools, training, and technical assistance to public health practitioners and researchers who are working to enact and enforce policy, systems and environmental interventions to promote public health.

Task Force members have been working hard to assessing over 150 retailers in Martin County, studying things like how they price tobacco products, where they are placed, and even access to fresh fruits and vegetables.  This past year, they worked with stores that have adopted an AVC (Assurances of Voluntary Compliance) agreement with the state to adhere to higher standards when it comes to tobacco marketing towards youth at the point of sale.

What did they discover?
Over the course of the store assessments, the Martin County Point of Sale Task Force had many findings of interest relating to how tobacco products are marketed and sold in our community.

The Martin County Point of Sale Task Force will continue efforts this year to monitor AVC retailers in the community, revisiting those surveyed last year and helping to educate retailers on the details of their AVC agreements.

Youth access to tobacco products and advertisements targeting youth remain one of the primary concerns of the Tobacco Free Partnership of Martin County.  Each year, tobacco companies spend over $11 billion a year to market their products, which represents $8,500 spent to recruit each of the new 1.3 million teenage smokers each year.  85% of those advertising dollars are spent directly at retail outlets.

To learn more about the Tobacco Free Partnership’s efforts to counteract tobacco marketing at retail outlets and the work of the Point of Sale Task Force, visit