On July 1, Walmart raised the minimum age to buy tobacco to 21 at all U.S. Walmart and Sam's Club locations.
Walmart will stop selling all e-cigarettes in its U.S. stores amid a growing number of deaths linked to the devices and federal regulatory concerns.
According to an internal memo cited by CNBC, Walmart will stop selling e-cigarettes because of “regulatory complexity” surrounding the products.
“Given the growing federal, state and local regulatory complexity and uncertainty regarding e-cigarettes, we plan to discontinue the sale of electronic nicotine delivery products at all Walmart and Sam’s Club U.S. locations,” Walmart says in the memo. “We will complete our exit after selling through current inventory.”
Walmart's move comes after President Trump said this month that the FDA would be putting out "some very strong recommendations" regarding the use of flavored e-cigarettes.
Last week another person died from a vaping-related lung disease, Missouri health officials said, bringing the death toll to eight and the number of people sickened by vaping to 530. More than half of the 530 patients have been under the age of 25, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. A smaller fraction, 17% of the total, were over the age of 35.
Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart operates more than 11,300 stores under 58 banners in 27 countries, and ecommerce websites, employing 2.2 million-plus associates worldwide. The company is No. 1 on Progressive Grocer’s 2019 Super 50 list of the top grocers in the United States.