We teach about and enforce the Smoke-Free Ontario Act. The Act affects tobacco retailers in various ways, including the following:
- No selling, buying or giving tobacco to a person under age 19
- Health warning signs must be posted at retail
Public Health checks that people and places follow the Acts. Our tobacco enforcement officers visit each tobacco and e-cigarette retailer throughout the year. We also send in youth test shoppers for these inspections.
We work closely with our partners to deal with illegal forms of tobacco (contraband).
Changes to the Smoke-Free Ontario Act
On January 1, 2016, changes to the Smoke-Free Ontario Act came into effect. These changes are important to tobacco retailers, as they:
- Double the maximum fine for selling tobacco products to minors
- Ban most flavoured tobacco products
- Expand the seizure authority of inspectors
- Make it illegal to offer promotional items with the sale of tobacco products
Exemptions to the flavoured tobacco ban
Temporary and permanent exceptions to the flavored tobacco ban include:
- Flavoured pipe tobacco and cigars with wine, port, whiskey or rum flavouring (permanently exempt)
- Menthol-flavoured tobacco products (such as cigarettes and cigarillos) and clove flavored cigarettes (exempt until January 1, 2017)
Electronic Cigarettes Act
As of January 1, 2016, it is illegal to:
- Sell or supply e-cigarettes or their parts to anyone under 19
- Sell e-cigarettes using publicly accessible vending machines. A vending machine maybe used for display purposes, so long as people are not able to purchase e-cigarettes directly from the machine.
- Required to post an Electronic Cigarette Age Restriction Sign and an Electronic Cigarette Identification Sign in their stores. Both signs must be in a place that is clearly visibly to both the person buying and the person selling e-cigarettes.
- Expected to check the identification of anyone attempting to purchase an e-cigarette who appears to be younger than 25.
© Queen's Printer for Ontario
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