FILE PHOTO: The Kroger grocery store chain's headquarters is proven in Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S., June 28, 2018. REUTERS/Lisa Baertlein/File Picture
(Reuters) – Kroger Co (KR.N) and Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc WBA.N stated on Monday they’d cease promoting e-cigarettes at their shops, amid heightened regulatory scrutiny of the product and studies of lung illness and a few deaths linked to vaping.
Their transfer comes weeks after Walmart Inc (WMT.N) stated it was pulling the plug on e-cigarette gross sales, citing rising federal, state and native regulatory complexity and uncertainty.
E-cigarettes and different vaping merchandise have been linked to a mysterious lung sickness that’s reported to have led to 18 deaths as of final week, with the variety of confirmed and possible instances of the situation exceeding 1,000, based on the U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention (CDC).
Kroger stated it might discontinue gross sales of e-cigarettes at its shops and gasoline facilities after promoting by its present stock.
Walgreens stated it had determined to cease promoting e-cigarette merchandise at its U.S. shops because the CDC, the U.S. Meals and Drug Administration (FDA) and different well being officers proceed to look at the difficulty.
The pharmacy chain, which earlier this yr set a minimal age to promote tobacco merchandise at 21 years, stated the choice was additionally reflective of growing laws in a rising variety of states and municipalities.
New York and Michigan have already banned the gross sales of flavored vaping merchandise, whereas the Trump administration has introduced plans to take away all flavored e-cigarettes from retailer cabinets as officers warned that candy flavors had drawn thousands and thousands of youngsters into nicotine dependancy.
Kroger operates greater than 2,700 shops, together with over 1,500 gasoline stations, whereas Walgreens runs almost 10,000 drugstores in america.
Reporting by Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru and Richa Naidu in Chicago; Enhancing by Anil D’Silva