A bill that would have banned anyone born after 2002 from using or buying tobacco and vaping products in Hawaii has failed to advance and will not become law as part of the current legislative session, which ends on Thursday, May 4.

S.B. 148 would have changed the state’s minimum age to purchase tobacco products—currently, you must be at least 21-years-old—to a new policy. Anyone born on or after Jan. 1, 2003 would not be able to possess, purchase or use tobacco or vaping products. Anyone born before Jan. 1, 2003 could continue to use and purchase these products. Given that S.B. 148 did not pass, the current requirement of 21-years-old to purchase tobacco or vaping products remains the law.

This type of ban is known as a generational smoking ban, a new anti-tobacco measure that was formally introduced in New Zealand in 2021 and was approved by that country’s government late last year.

This year, legislators in California, Hawaii and Nevada introduced their own versions of generational smoking bans, though all failed to gain traction, let alone become close to becoming law. The bill proposed in Hawaii was the most prohibitive of the trio as it extended to the possession of tobacco or vaping products, whereas the other bills focused on sales.

S.B. 148 had six co-sponsors and failed to get a vote in a single committee.

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Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of halfwheel.com/Rueda Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I have written about the cigar industry for more than a decade, covering everything from product launches to regulation to M&A. In addition, I handle a lot of the behind-the-scenes stuff here at halfwheel. I enjoy playing tennis, watching boxing, falling asleep to the Le Mans 24, wearing sweatshirts year-round and eating gyros. echte liebe.