Kroger latest retailer to stop selling e-cigarettes amid backlash

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A buyer strolling in a Kroger grocery store.

Al Behrman | AP

Kroger is becoming a member of Walmart and different retailers in discontinuing its sale of digital cigarettes, a spokeswoman for the corporate informed CNBC on Monday.

The grocer, which additionally owns Harris Teeter, Ralphs, Fred Meyer, and different retailer manufacturers, stated it’s discontinuing the sale of the product due “to the mounting questions and increasingly-complex regulatory environment.”

A spokeswoman for the corporate confirmed it can proceed to promote tobacco merchandise in its shops.

E-cigarettes, which had grown in reputation with teenagers, have come beneath regulatory and public scrutiny as a mysterious, lethal vaping sickness continues to declare lives. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recognized at the least 18 confirmed deaths and 1,080 possible instances throughout 48 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands as of final Tuesday. Most sufferers recognized vaped THC, the lively ingredient in marijuana, in accordance to the CDC. Seventeen p.c stated they completely used nicotine.

Walmart stated in September it can stop selling e-cigarettes in its Walmart and Sam’s Clubs location, citing “regulatory complexity.” Rite Aid in April stated it will stop selling e-cigarettes in all shops.

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