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FDA officially raises tobacco buying age to 21

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has officially raised the federal legal age to buy tobacco products from 18 to 21.

The new minimum age applies to all tobacco products, including e-cigarettes and vaping cartridges, and comes after President Trump last week signed a $1.4 trillion spending package that included a measure raising the tobacco-buying age.

It had bipartisan support, being introduced in May by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va.

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

However, the FDA said in a message posted on its website that the change is now in effect: “It is now illegal for a retailer to sell any tobacco product – including cigarettes, cigars and e-cigarettes – to anyone under 21.”

The FDA also noted that more information will be available regarding the policy change as it becomes available.

Nineteen states, including Ohio, and the District of Columbia have already raised the minimum age on tobacco products to 21, according to the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.

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