Business reacting to raising minimum tobacco purchase age to 21

Change comes as concerns continue about a mysterious outbreak of vaping-related lung injuries

Posted: Dec 29, 2019 2:09 AM
Updated: Dec 29, 2019 2:21 AM

MASON CITY, Iowa - You must now be at least 21 years old to buy tobacco producs in the U.S., and that includes in our area.

The FDA says the new rule, which prohibits the sale of products like cigarettes, cigars and E-cigarettes, is now in effect.

The change comes as concerns continue about a mysterious outbreak of vaping-related lung injuries. The latest report found that 1 in 4 12th graders, 1 in 5 10th graders, and nearly 1 in 10 8th graders say that they have vaped nicotine in the past month.

Ali Shah and Raul Juarez of Mason City's Liquor, Tobacco & Grocery support the move, though asking for IDs may not be an easy thing for some customers.

"We have some problems when we have to ask ID, and guys are fighting with us, argue with us, 'why are you asking me? I'm old enough,' this and that. What about me? My point of view? It's very good to see them make it 21."

However, they're wanting to follow the law, and will be asking for everyone's ID, even if someone may look older than they appear.

"If the law says we're not allowed to sell to a younger age, if somebody's less than 21, we are not allowed to sell to them. And I'm happy to not sell anything to them either. If anyone comes in and don't want to show their ID, I don't want to see their money. We need to follow the law."

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