The majority of adults support raising the minimum age of sale for all tobacco products to 21 years. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) conducted a survey that found 3 out of 4 adults – including 7 of 10 cigarette smokers—favor increasing the minimum age for tobacco sales. Delaying the legal age to purchase tobacco products would likely reduce the number of young adults becoming regular tobacco users.
The CDC cites an Institute of
Medicine report that found increasing the legal age for sale of tobacco products could result in a 12 percent decrease in cigarette smoking prevalence across the nation by 2100. That translates to 250,000 fewer premature deaths from cigarette smoking for people born between 2000 and 2019. In Idaho, 12 people die every week from lung cancer, with most cancer deaths associated with smoking.
In most states the minimum age of sale for tobacco is 18, although four states, including Utah, have a minimum age of 19. Only one state, Hawaii, restricts sales until age 21. To read the CDC news release, please click here.