It’s been on the radar since at least March, but the Pittsfield, Mass. Board of Health has finally approved an increase to the minimum age to purchase tobacco and nicotine delivery products, increasing it from 18 to 21-years-old and joining more than 100 cities and towns in passing such an increase.

The unanimous vote came at Wednesday night’s meeting, with the five member panel also voting to cap the number of tobacco retailer permits in the city at the current number of 52, a number which can go down should a store close or a license expiring due to a lack of renewal.

According to a report in the Berkshire Eagle, more than half of Massachusetts’ population now lives in areas where the minimum age to purchase tobacco products is 21, a claim made by Gina Armstrong, director of the Pittsfield Health Department.

The purchase age increase will go into effect on Nov. 1.

Pittsfield is home to nearly 45,000 residents.

Patrick Lagreid

I strive to capture the essence of a cigar and the people behind them in my work – every cigar you light up is the culmination of the work of countless people and often represents generations of struggle and stories. For me, it’s about so much more than the cigar – it’s about the story behind it, the experience of enjoying the work of artisans and the way that a good cigar can bring people together. In addition to my work with halfwheel, I’m the public address announcer for the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks during spring training, as well as for the Salt River Rafters of the Arizona Fall League, the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for, plus I'm a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.