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FDA: It is now illegal to sell tobacco products to people younger than 21

US cigarette smoking rate reaches new low
Posted at 1:11 PM, Dec 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-27 13:11:26-05

LANSING, Mich. — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration states that the federal minimum age to buy tobacco is now 21 years old.

When initially signed into law earlier this month, there was no effective date for raising the age to buy tobacco from 18 to 21. It was suggested that the new law wouldn’t be enforced for about six to nine months.

The FDA, however, released the following statement on its website:

On December 20, 2019, the President signed legislation to amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, and raise the federal minimum age of sale of tobacco products from 18 to 21 years. It is now illegal for a retailer to sell any tobacco product – including cigarettes, cigars and e-cigarettes – to anyone under 21. FDA will provide additional details on this issue as they become available.

While the FDA states it’s now illegal to sell tobacco to anyone under the age of 21, both they and the law itself state there are more steps that must be done to finalize things.

Along with the initial statement on its site, the agency tweeted: “As required by the legislation, @US_FDA intends to publish a final rule updating its current regulations solely to carry out the amendments made by the legislation within 180 days. FDA will provide additional details on this issue as they become available.”

The legislation says the regulations will take effect no more than 90 days after the final rule is published.

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