Locals react to the change in the legal age for tobacco purchases

Locals react to the change in the legal age for tobacco purchases

Anyone under 21 can no longer legally buy cigarettes, cigars or any other tobacco products in the U.S.

President Donald Trump signed the change into federal law December 20.

Nineteen states-Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia and Washington, as well as Washington, D.C. -raised their tobacco buying age to 21, according to the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.

The minimum age requirement applies to every retailer nationwide.

"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.

"This is a major step in protecting the next generation of children from becoming addicted to tobacco products", new FDA commissioner Dr. Stephen Hahn tweeted last week.

MTN spoke to several retailers in the Helena area who sell tobacco products.

Health Canada has set the minimum legal age for purchasing tobacco products at 18 but provinces can choose to enforce an older age.

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

Although South Dakota state law has not been updated to align with the federal law, retailers should heed FDA guidance. After that, the minimum age change would take place within 90 days.

The FDA's announcement comes just weeks after Montana regulators began implementing new emergency rules that prohibit retailers in the state from selling any flavored vaping products.

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