As tobacco laws constantly change, getting the most value from your tobacco sales has NEVER been as important as now. Some things we can control – our store front, advertising, community outreach, etc. Many things we cannot control like Tobacco purchase age. As laws change, sales can also change. STAY competitive with Scan Data Rebates offered by Altria and RJR. Insight Retail Software’s team of professionals can get your store submitting data ASAP.
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I mentioned tobacco laws changing. The latest change comes to us from Gov. Chris Christie. When New Jersey law takes effect on November 1, 2017, NJ will become the 3rd state to set legal tobacco age to 21. Hawaii and California being the first two states to make this change. Gov. Christie stated that “By raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco products to 21, we are giving young people more time to develop a maturity and better understanding of how dangerous smoking can be and that it is better to not start smoking in the first place,”
But not everyone is happy about this change. As Nacs Online reports:
Meanwhile, merchants are disappointed about the change, given that neighboring states will still sell tobacco products to those between the ages of 19 and 21,
WFMZ-TV reports. “It’s going to be a negative business-wise,” said Sal Cassar, owner of Towne Market in Phillipsburg, N.J. “There’s no two ways about that.”
Cassar estimated that customers between the ages of 19 and 21 buy around a third of his tobacco sales.
“You don’t only lose the cigarette sell, [you also lose] any other associated product that the customer was going to buy,” he told the news source.
Meanwhile, in Maine, Gov. Paul LePage vetoed a bill that would have increased the state’s tobacco buying age to 21, the Press-Herald reports. “I believe that at 18 they are mature enough to make a decision and I’m tired of living in a society where we social engineer our lives,” the governor said of his veto.