Health Benefits of Increasing the Price of Tobacco

BreatheND_bndtaxphoto.jpgTobacco companies hook their customers to a life-long nicotine addiction, and need to recruit replacements for those who have died. They want your children for replacements.

We can reduce youth smoking by making tobacco less affordable. Increasing the cigarette price by $2.00 per pack can reduce youth smoking by nearly 23%.

At 44 cents per pack of cigarettes, North Dakota has one of the lowest cigarette taxes in the nation. Cheap tobacco is a leading cause for tobacco use among our state’s youth. According to Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, increasing the price of a pack of cigarettes by $2 can prevent 6,700 youth from becoming addicted to nicotine and would prevent 4,000 premature smoking-related deaths. In addition, North Dakota would save over $283 million in long-term health care costs.



What can be done to protect our young people?

According to the Surgeon General’s report, increasing the price of tobacco is one of the most effective methods to prevent youth from ever starting to use tobacco.

Strong research — including state studies in the areas of health, employment and revenue — shows that increasing the price of tobacco is an effective way to reduce tobacco use rates among both youth and adults.

Other steps that can help keep kids tobacco-free include:
  • Educating parents, teachers, young people and the general public on the harms of tobacco and nicotine products
     
  • Setting a smoke-free and tobacco-free example at home and at school
     
  • Eliminating fruit and candy flavors from tobacco and nicotine products
     
  • Eliminating candy-like packaging and slick marketing aimed at youth
     
  • Keeping all tobacco and nicotine products out of the hands of young people



Resources

Minnesota's 2013 Tobacco Tax Increase is Improving Health

Minnesota 2013 Tobacco Tax White Paper