FDA: Tobacco 21 law now in effect

FDA headquarters

FDA: Federal Tobacco 21 Law Is Now in Effect

"On Dec. 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 applies to everything from cigarettes and cigars to e-cigarettes and vaping products.

What was unclear in the proposal, however, was when the change in the minimum age would be enacted.

The provision raising the legal limit from 18 to 21 nationwide was in a massive spending bill passed by Congress and signed by the president on December 20.

The legal age to buy tobacco products has been raised from 18 to 21 years of age, which is gauging reaction from tobacco users and retailers.

"They're also confused of why and where and why this happened and why no one was given a notice, so it makes a really confusing situation on who we can let in and how, and the way to explain that to yourself, and to the customers I mean", he said.




The agency has regulated tobacco products since 2009. Spokeswoman Mary Kathryn Colbert said the retailer "is committed to the safe, responsible and lawful sale of tobacco products sold in our stores".

What is clear is that there will be more questions in the coming weeks, as the change moves forward.

The federal legislation says the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services must update its regulations within six months - including requiring retailers to check the age of anyone under 30 who wants to buy tobacco products. After that, the change to the minimum age to purchase tobacco would take place within 90 days.

Giant Eagle's OH and Maryland stores stopped selling cigarettes to 18-, 19- and 20-year-olds in October to comply with new state legislation.

Latest News