Virginia tobacco age is increasing, according to the latest data from the National Institute of Tobacco and Alcohol Research.
According to the new report, the tobacco shop age is currently at the lowest level since 1991.
This year, the shop age was 14.8 for the first time since the National Institutes of Health started tracking tobacco shop ages in 1992.
While the shop rate in Virginia dropped by 5 percent, the number of people who were still smoking declined by 16.8 percent.
It is likely that this year’s decline is attributable to a few factors, including increased education and awareness of the health effects of tobacco use, according the report.
The most notable change in Virginia over the past year was the rise in the number who were living with chronic disease, according research published in Tobacco Control.
That increased prevalence of chronic disease and the availability of medications for treating it have led to an increase in the rate of smoking in the state.
Although the state is now the third-most-populous state in the nation, it still trails only California and New York.
Virginia has the third highest rate of obesity in the country, and its rate of teen smoking is also at its highest.
As of January 1, Virginia had 2,931 people with a tobacco shop-related diagnosis, the latest year data was available.
In 2015, more than 9,000 people died of tobacco-related causes in Virginia, according a study by the Virginia Center for Public Policy and Research.
The death toll in Virginia climbed from 1,067 in 2015 to 2,734 in 2016, and then to 2.3 million in 2017.
Read more about the state’s tobacco shop industry here.