Retailers are required to post signs prohibiting sales of tobacco products and inhalant delivery systems to persons under the age of 21. Download and print signs below.
Would you like more information about the laws related to selling tobacco and vaping products to persons under the age of 21?
Laws on Sale of Tobacco and Inhalant Delivery Systems
Businesses that sell tobacco products and inhalant delivery systems in Oregon are responsible for complying with Oregon laws.
Oregon revised statutes (ORS)** and Oregon administrative rules** regulate the sale and distribution of tobacco products and inhalant delivery systems to persons under 21 years old. These statutes and rules require retailers to post a notice about the prohibition of selling tobacco products and inhalant delivery systems to persons under 21 years old; and require retailers to place tobacco products and inhalant delivery systems in a location where customers cannot access them without assistance from an employee. Tobacco and Inhalant Delivery Systems Sales to Minors, OAR 333-015-0200 to 0220
Inhalant delivery systems retailers are required to comply with Oregon packaging standards (e.g. prohibitions on “packaging that is attractive to minors” and requirements for child-resistant packaging) and all federal rules regulating inhalant delivery systems. Packaging and Labeling Standards for Inhalant Delivery Systems, OAR 333-015-0300 to 0375
Selling tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems to a person under 21 years of age
A person commits this offense if he or she knowingly distributes, sells or allows to be sold to a person under 21 years old:
- Tobacco products; or
- An inhalant delivery system, as defined in ORS 431A.175.
Posting signs about selling tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems
ORS* 431A.175; ORS*167.770
Establishments that sell tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems must display a sign clearly stating that these products cannot be sold to persons under 21 years of age.
Random inspections of tobacco product or inhalant delivery system sellers
The Oregon Health Authority and law enforcement agencies conduct random, unannounced inspections of wholesalers and retailers of tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems to ensure compliance with laws related to sale of tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems to persons under 21 years of age.
Sale of tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems
It is unlawful to:
- Fail to post a notice that it is unlawful to sell tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems to persons under 21 years of age. This notice must be clearly visible to the seller and the purchaser of tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems;
- Distribute, sell or allow to be sold an inhalant delivery system that is:
- not packaged in child-resistant safety packaging;
- packaged in a manner that is attractive to minors; or
- Sell cigarettes in any form other than a sealed package.
Location of tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems
ORS*167.780; ORS 167.765
Unless persons under 21 years of age are permanently prohibited from entering the establishment, tobacco products or inhalant delivery systems may not:
- Be sold or dispensed from a vending machine; or
- Be in a location in the store where they are accessible by store customers without assistance from a store employee.
*ORS: Oregon Revised Statute
FDA Deeming Rule
On May 5, 2016, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) finalized a rule extending its authority to all tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, cigars, hookah tobacco and pipe tobacco, among others.
The FDA is now able to:
- Prohibit free samples;
- Require warning labels;
- Prevent misleading health claims by tobacco product manufacturers;
- Evaluate the ingredients of all tobacco products and how they are made; and,
- Communicate the potential risks of tobacco products.
This final rule went into effect on August 8, 2016.
For a summary of the rules for tobacco retailers, visit: Retailer Overview of FDA Regulations for Selling Tobacco Products.
In November 2018, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb released a statement outlining proposed new steps to protect youth by preventing access to flavored tobacco products and banning menthol in cigarettes.
In December 2018, the U.S. Surgeon General issued an advisory on e-cigarettes, declaring their use an "epidemic" among youth and urged all to take action now to protect the health of our nation’s young people.
Federal Compliance Check Inspections
Federal compliance checks of tobacco product retailers are done by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The most recent results from the FDA compliance checks are available here: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/oce/inspections/oce_insp_searching.cfm
Oregon's Retail Tobacco Inspection Programs
All required state-level Tobacco Retail Inspections programs are coordinated and managed by the Oregon Health Authority, Public Health Division. The most recent inspection results are available state-wide and by county here:
2019 Inspection Report
2019 Executive Summary
For more information about the types of state inspections conducted in Oregon, view the Inspection Matrix
See a violation? Report it.
FDA violations, including flavored cigarette sales, free samples, self-service, pack size, and marketing violations may be reported here: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/ptvr/index.cfm
Oregon law violations, including sales to persons under 21 years of age, may be reported here: Tobacco.Inspections@state.or.us or 971-673-0984.
OHA 2020 Synar Report
The Oregon Health Authority Public Health Division sought input and public comment on the draft 2020 Annual Synar Report.
The federal Synar Amendment requires states to enact and enforce laws prohibiting the sale and distribution of tobacco products to underage persons. States must enforce youth tobacco access laws in a manner that can reasonably be expected to reduce the extent to which tobacco products are available to underage persons. States must conduct random, unannounced inspections of youth-accessible tobacco outlets to assess tobacco retailer compliance with state law. State retailer violation rates must not surpass 20 percent.
States must submit an annual report detailing their activities. State reports must be made available for public comment prior to submission. The public comment period closed Monday, November 18, 2019.
The final 2020 Synar report will be posted in December of 2019.