- Walmart is raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, to 21 years old starting July 1.
- The company will also stop selling fruit-flavored e-cigarettes.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Walmart said Wednesday that it will stop selling tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, to anyone under 21 years old.
The change will take effect on July 1 across all US Walmart and Sam’s Club stores.
Walmart is also in the process of discontinuing the sale of fruit- and dessert-flavored e-cigarettes, which research shows are preferred by minors, the company said.
Walmart made the changes after receiving a letter from the US Food and Drug Administration regarding the sale of tobacco to minors.
"While we have implemented a robust compliance program, we are not satisfied with falling short of our companywide goal of 100% compliance," John Scudder, Walmart US Chief Compliance and Ethics Officer, said in a blog post announcing the changes. "Even a single sale to a minor is one too many, and we take seriously our responsibilities in this regard. So today, we sent a letter back to the FDA outlining additional measures we’re taking to keep tobacco out of the hands of minors."
Walmart said it it plans to improve employee training to prevent the sale of tobacco products to minors, and crack down harder on employees who fail its "secret shopper" checks that ensure workers are following protocols.
Previously, employees who failed the tests were required to engage in extra training and instruction, but faced no disciplinary action.
That change last month. Employees who fail the "secret shopper" tests will now be at risk of termination. The company said it plans to conduct 8,000 "secret shopper" checks in 2019.
- Walmart is adding veterinary clinics to 100 stores and launching a pet pharmacy as millennials spend thousands on their pets and treat them ‘like their firstborn child’
- Here’s what it costs to open a McDonald’s restaurant
- Vogue’s editor-in-chief Anna Wintour is worth an estimated $35 million. From her first job in retail to Condé Nast artistic director and Met Gala co-host, here’s what her career and life have been like.