Public Policy Research Talk

Date 01/22/19 1:00pm to 2:00pm
Presenter(s) Shannon Lea Watkins, Ph.D.
Location 124 Sparks Building

Menthol, Mango, and Crème Brûlée: Predictors and Consequences 0f Flavored Tobacco Experimentation

In November 2018, the commissioner of the USDA identified the increasing use of e-cigarettes among youth as an epidemic. Identifying flavors as the core of the epidemic, he announced plans to restrict the sale of flavored tobacco products to adult-only shops. Watkins examines the role of flavors in youth experimentation with tobacco and subsequent established tobacco use. In this talk, she will use data from a large nationally representative, longitudinal dataset (2013-2016) to compare risk factors for and impacts of flavored tobacco initiation for all tobacco, cigarettes, electronic nicotine products, cigars, hookah, and smokeless tobacco. Differences in prevalence of flavored tobacco use among racial and ethnic groups were largely limited to menthol cigarettes. Generally, tobacco-risk characteristics did not differentiate youth who initiated with flavored and non-flavored tobacco products, but flavored tobacco experimentation was associated with tobacco use one year later. While restrictions on the sale of flavored tobacco products might have limited effect on tobacco experimentation, such restrictions could prevent experimenters from becoming established tobacco users.


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