Know the Law
On Dec. 20, 2019, the President signed legislation amending the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, and raising 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. Additional information can be found at www.fda.gov
Until now, tobacco products have escaped the FDA's common-sense regulations that apply to other consumer products, such as food, drugs and even lipstick. The new law will:
- Crack down on tobacco marketing and sales to kids.
- Ban candy and fruit-flavored cigarettes.
- Require larger, more effective health warnings on tobacco products.
- Require tobacco companies to disclose the contents of tobacco products, as well as changes in products and research about their health effects.
- Ban terms such as "light" and "low-tar" that mislead consumers into believing that certain cigarettes are safer.
- Strictly regulate all health-related claims about tobacco products to ensure they are scientifically proven and do not discourage current tobacco users from quitting or encourage new users to start.
- Empower the FDA authority to require changes in tobacco products, such as the removal or reduction of harmful ingredients.
To learn what a tobacco product violation includes, or to report a violation to the FDA click here.
Visit the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids Web site to view factsheets and the effective dates of the FDA Law.