Bookmark and Share

Why does a deadly, addictive product that is supposed to be for adults look and smell like candy?

Chocolate, caramel, cinnamon apple… These are just a few of the thousands of sweet and fruity flavors available in tobacco products. The FDA banned the sale of flavored cigarettes (other than menthol) in 2009. But flavored e-cigarettes, e-liquids, cigars, hookah, and chewing tobacco continue to be sold. These products use kid-friendly flavors, colorful packaging, and low prices to entice young people. The sweet flavors mask the harshness of the nicotine and keep kids coming back until they become addicted.

The Growing Threat of Electronic Cigarettes

According to a 2016 Report of the U.S. Surgeon General e-cigarette use has grown “an astounding 900% among high school students from 2011 to 2015” making it the most commonly used form of tobacco among youth in the United States. Data released in March of 2017 by the California Department of Public Health shows that the availability of e-cigarettes in local stores increased by 67% from 2013 to 2016.

Santa Cruz County Residents Support Tobacco Laws that Protect Our Kids

According to data from Santa Cruz County 2016 Healthy Stores for a Healthy Community store observations and public intercept surveys, 91% of local residents would support a law to prevent stores near schools from selling tobacco products and 67% would support a law to ban the sale of flavored tobacco products. Restricting the sale of flavored tobacco products is a critical step to preventing another generation of young people from living with a lifetime of addiction.

Help Us Spread the Word about the Dangers of Flavored Tobacco Products

Come to TEC meetings to strategize about next steps! Members have the opportunity to participate in activities such as: conducting public opinion polls about flavored tobacco products; conducting retail store surveys; attending educational meetings with local policy makers; writing letters, articles and op-eds for local publications.

Flavored Tobacco Resources

TEC Mission Statement

The Santa Cruz County Tobacco Education Coalition (TEC) is committed to promoting and advocating a tobacco-free lifestyle and environment at the local, state, and national levels. We empower our communities to effect individual and social change through education, advocacy, collaboration, and coordination of resources.  The Coalition recognizes individual rights and cultural traditions, while encouraging community responsibility and involvement.



Report Smoking Violations
(831) 454-4319

If you want to make a complaint about a smoking violation inside a building, call (831) 454-4319 or fill out this electronic form.

Trying to Quit?
You can do it! We can help. Call 454-4141 to request self-help materials and a list of smoking cessation classes in Santa Cruz County.

For free quit counseling over the phone, call the California Smoker’s Help Line at 1-800-NO-BUTTS (English) or 1-800-45-NO-FUME (Spanish).

Tobacco Retail Licenses (TRL)
Looking for information about how to obtain a Tobacco Retailer’s License? Click here.


Contact Us

Click here to send us a comment