Danny McGoldrick, research director for the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, said this is yet another example of the reach of tobacco company marketing.
"This is one more piece of evidence that the tobacco marketing efforts affect kids, and the companies are still up to it," McGoldrick said. "For companies that claim not to market to kids anymore, they sure do a good job of getting them to use their product."
Marlboro is smoked by more high-school students than all the other brands combined, McGoldrick said. "When you are close to 90 percent market share among these three brands, they are doing something right," he said.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration needs to have the authority to regulate tobacco marketing, McGoldrick said. "The FDA regulates food, drugs and even cosmetics, but doesn't regulate a product that kills half the people that use it, and 90 percent of the users start as children," he said.
McGoldrick thinks more money is needed to counter tobacco company marketing. "The states aren't using their tobacco settlement or tax dollars to fund the programs we know work to counter tobacco industry marketing and promotion," he said.
For more on teenagers and smoking, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
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