Skip to main content

Our top issues

In our fight to prevent youth and young adult nicotine addiction, we focus on the issues that matter most. To identify these priorities, we constantly monitor, investigate and analyze the latest topics and trends in commercial tobacco and substance use. These are our top issues.

Stacked Elf bar JUUL vuse puff bar breeze and hyde vapes


With over 2.5 million middle and high school students using e-cigarettes, new tobacco products are threatening to addict a new generation to nicotine. We are committed to research and actions that protect today's young people. E-cigarettes should be tools to help adult smokers quit combustible tobacco, not an on-ramp to addict a new generation of young people to nicotine.

See more on e-cigarettes
fda flavors candy


Four out of five young adults who have ever used tobacco reported that their first product was flavored. Despite their proven appeal to youth, flavored tobacco products remain on the market. In addition to menthol cigarettes, flavored tobacco products include an array of smokeless tobacco, cigars, hookah and e-cigarettes that come in candy, fruit and cocktail flavors like sour apple, cherry, grape, chocolate, strawberry margarita, appletini, piña colada, cotton candy and cinnamon roll, to name just a few.

See more on flavored tobacco products

​Tobacco in pop culture

From video games to social influencers to top Netflix shows, tobacco imagery in entertainment continues to portray smoking positively, as a normal social behavior and as glamorous, rebellious and edgy. These images have influence, especially among youth and young adults, who are uniquely susceptible to social and environmental influences to use tobacco. 

See more on tobacco in pop culture
Girl vaping and texting

Industry Influence

The tobacco industry has a long history of shamelessly protecting its profits at the expense of people’s lives. As e-cigarettes put a new generation at risk of nicotine addiction, tobacco companies are mounting a campaign to try to transform their image with non-combustible tobacco products and claims that they can be part of the “public health solution” to end smoking.

See more on tobacco industry influence

Tobacco-free communities

Tobacco-free communities contribute to creating a culture where all youth and young adults reject tobacco and provide important protection from secondhand smoke exposure. Yet more than 42 percent of the U.S. population remains unprotected, with only 28 states and territories that have enacted comprehensive smoke-free laws. In addition to supporting these comprehensive laws, we also help create tobacco-free communities by teaming with minority-serving academic institutions, community colleges and women’s colleges to become smoke- or tobacco-free with our Tobacco-free College Program, calling on pharmacies to stop selling tobacco and supporting Tobacco 21 policies that raise the legal age to purchase tobacco.

See more on tobacco-free communities
Subway walking

Tobacco is a social justice issue

Tobacco is not an equal opportunity killer. Black Americans and vulnerable populations targeted by the tobacco industry – including LGBTQ individuals, women, youth, members of the military and those with mental health conditions –  have long faced a disproportionate burden from tobacco-related diseases and death.

See more on tobacco and social justice
Pill bottle and pills

The opioid crisis

In the U.S., 18-25 year olds have the highest rates of opioid misuse and young Americans are especially vulnerable to misunderstanding the risks associated with addiction and the dangerous spiral down from prescription to illicit misuse.

See more on the opioid crisis

​Help quitting

Tobacco use is still the leading cause of preventable death and disease in the country and leads to 540,000 deaths in the U.S. each year. While most smokers say they want to quit, annual quit success rates remain low — at roughly 7 percent — underscoring the highly addictive nature of nicotine. The youth e-cigarette use public health crisis has also created a major need for information on how to quit vaping. We remain committed to not just preventing tobacco use and nicotine addiction among young people, but also to rigorous research and innovation to help those who are addicted quit. That's why we have developed our proven-effective quit programs EX, The EX Program and This is Quitting. We’ve helped more than 1 million people on their quit-smoking journey through EX and The EX Program and enrolled nearly 40,000 people to quit vaping in just the first three months of This is Quitting.

See more on quitting tobacco products

We are creating a future where commercial tobacco and nicotine addiction are things of the past. This is how we're doing.

See our impact

Get the latest facts and analyses on the most important issues in commercial tobacco and substance use.

Explore our research and resources