This grade tells you whether your state has increased the age at which stores can sell tobacco products to people to age 21. Increasing the minimum age of sale to 21 will decrease smoking by kids. These laws are often referred to as "Tobacco 21" laws. Increasing the tobacco sales age helps prevent tobacco use among youth by making it harder for teens to purchase tobacco products. Teens in high school often rely on friends who are 18 or older to purchase tobacco products for them; increasing the age to 21 reduces that access preventing kids from becoming addicted to tobacco.
Note: On December 20, 2019, President Trump signed legislation raising the federal minimum age of sale for all tobacco products to 21 nationwide. The 2020 State of Tobacco Control grades states on their efforts to increase their state tobacco sales age to 21 prior to that law being signed.
Page last updated: May 13, 2020