Table 3

Selected consumer focus group comments

Attitudes towards retailers voluntarily ending tobacco sales

Potential impact on shopping patterns


I think it's a great idea. ... It's making a statement to the community that they're health conscious. They're looking out for the people in the community. And, maybe they'll make a precedent for other people and other stores to follow them. (Male #1, nonsmoker, pharmacy 3 focus group)

I like the idea. [It] made me wanna shop there more. ... I lost a brother to stage four lung cancer in the last 2 years because he smoked for 35 years. And so for me, it really strikes a chord. ... I really can support, and I like, their choice not to sell cigarettes. (Female #3, nonsmoker, grocery 1 focus group)


I think that it's a good thing if they volunteer, because it's really a health issue. And I know I might be contradicting myself, I am a smoker. But I also recognize that it's a healthy thing, and there's plenty of other places if people wanna get them. But teenagers and new smokers find it easily accessible. And the main issue is the kids, because they can slide into the store or the drugstore and get' em very easily. So, I know it's contradicting, but I agree with that. I think it's a very good decision. (Female #6, smoker, grocery 1 focus group)

I think it's excellent. I mean, I commend them for that, and other stores should follow. ... I wished I had known. You know, I think that's a good thing to advertise. ... Because, it makes you want to, you know, go there more. You're like, they're taking the right stand, all right, I'll support them even more, you know? (Female #2, nonsmoker, grocery 1 focus group)


They're promoting wellness, ... taking care of yourself and staying healthy and not smoking, and awareness of lung cancer, lung disease. A lot of people are dying from this disease. (Male #5, nonsmoker, pharmacy 3 focus group)

You get a positive feeling about the management. ... I would encourage them with my business to reward them for the choice they made. (Female #4, nonsmoker, grocery 3 focus group)


I like it just from the gut feeling that the fewer places where tobacco is available, the harder it is for people to access it, and the more likely some people will become discouraged and either smoke less or quit. (Female #7, former smoker, grocery 2 focus group 1)

I'd be more likely to go to [grocery 2]. ... I could go to [grocery 2] just to make a statement, a small statement that says they're not going to sell tobacco, and I support them for eliminating the sales of tobacco. (Male #6, former smoker, grocery 2 focus group 1)


I think it's a good policy to not sell tobacco in a store. ... It puts out a positive image for children. (Female #1, smoker, pharmacy 4 focus group)

I would be more inclined to shop there as well just because ... they're discouraging the smokers to smoke. (Female #2, nonsmoker, grocery 3 focus group)


McDaniel and Malone BMC Public Health 2011 11:848   doi:10.1186/1471-2458-11-848

Open Data