By ANNE D’INNOCENZIO / AP |
(NEW YORK) — Walmart is getting out of the vaping business. The nation’s largest retailer said Friday that it will stop selling electronic cigarettes at its namesake stores and Sam’s Clubs when it sells out its current inventory. The move is due to “growing federal, state and local regulatory complexity” regarding vaping products. It also comes after several hundred people have mysteriously fallen ill after vaping, and eight have died.
Walmart’s decision is the latest blow to the vaping industry, which has tried to position its products as healthier alternatives to smoking cigarettes, which are responsible for 480,000 deaths a year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
But the industry has come under increased scrutiny after the deaths and illnesses — along with a surge in underage vaping.