The sale and use of our companies' tobacco and wine products are subject to international, federal, state and local laws and regulations. Consistent with our Vision and Our Cultural Aspiration, Altria Group and its companies advocate on a wide range of public policy issues that affect our businesses. We do this through responsible and constructive engagement with government officials, retailers, wholesalers, adult consumers and other stakeholders.

Participation in the political and public policy processes is vital to our business, serves the best interests of our shareholders, employees, trade partners and adult consumers, and is a necessary component of good corporate citizenship. Altria Group and its companies pursue our public policy objectives with integrity, responsibility and in full compliance with all laws. All of our political and public policy activities receive significant internal and external oversight, including active reviews by Altria’s Board of Directors. Additionally, our voluntary, wide-ranging disclosures provide meaningful information to shareholders, enabling them to understand our work in this area and to assess whether our activities may create any unnecessary risks. 

Each year, legislators introduce hundreds of legislative proposals that are important to our businesses and our stakeholders. There are many issues that impact our products and companies, including:

Federal Regulation of Tobacco

Altria Group and its tobacco operating companies actively supported legislation that granted the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authority to regulate tobacco products.

Helping Reduce Underage Tobacco Use

Altria’s tobacco companies support strong minimum age laws, including legislation that raises the minimum age for all tobacco products to 21.

Excise Taxes

Altria's tobacco companies oppose excise tax increases that are unfair to adult tobacco consumers, create additional incentives for illicit trade, are costly to legitimate businesses, do little to solve systemic state budget problems and can lead to less stability in the states’ finances.

Characterizing Flavors in Traditional Tobacco Products

We oppose legislative bans on flavored traditional tobacco products because they lead to illegal markets, undermine the regulatory system, and are unfair to adult tobacco consumers.

Sales Bans

Altria’s tobacco companies oppose legislation that would prohibit certain types of retail stores from selling tobacco products or would ban certain kinds of tobacco products. 

Tort Reform and Appeal Bond Caps

Altria Group and its operating companies believe in preserving fairness in the American judicial system.

Master Settlement Agreement

In the late 1990s, Philip Morris USA and U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company signed tobacco settlement agreements with state attorneys general. These agreements fundamentally changed how tobacco products are advertised, marketed and sold in the United States.

Illicit Trade

As excise taxes increase, so do the prices of tobacco products. Criminal organizations exploit these higher costs by selling smuggled, counterfeit, illegally-imported and stolen tobacco products for their own financial gain. 

Altria's tobacco operating companies engage with retailers, adult tobacco consumers and adults 21+ on legislative and regulatory issues through three websites as well as through three social media sites:
Tobacco Issues website screenshot

Tobacco Issues provides information on current legislative and regulatory issues.

- for tobacco retailers and trade members

Citizens For Tobacco Rights website screenshot

Citizens for Tobacco Rights provides our stakeholders with information on proposed legislation.

- for adult tobacco consumers

You may also connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Voice for Consumer Choice image

Voices for Consumer Choice provides adults with information on legislative issues related to adult consumer choice.

- for adults 21+

You may also connect with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.