STUDY: Availability of unhealthy products growing in Kern County

Posted at 1:05 PM, Mar 08, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-08 16:05:44-05

The availability of e-cigarettes in Kern County has grown 19.8% since 2013, according to a new study by the Kern County Public Health Services.

In addition to selling cigarettes, 86.6% of stores sell “little cigars” but only 43.8% of stores sold fresh fruits or vegetables.

91.3% of stores sold a popular brand of little cigars individuals under a dollar, less than the cost of a candy bar.

While only 27.6% of stores sold non- or low-fat milk, nearly 78.8% sell alcohol.

E-cigarette availability saw a significant increase in Kern County stores from the previous survey, 42.0% in 2013 to 61.8% in 2016.

More than 26.5% of Kern County stores in the survey placed tobacco products or ads at ‘kid-level’ or near candy or toys. 

The research released Wednesday showed the availability and marketing of tobacco products, alcohol and healthy as well as unhealthy food options in California stores that sell tobacco.

In Kern County, a random sample of 346 stores were surveyed in Arvin, Bakersfield, Ridgecrest, Delano, Shafter, Taft, California City, Frazier Park, Lebec, and Boron.