Retailers Begin Pulling E-Cigarettes & Vaping Products From Stores
NATIONAL REPORT — Retail chains are beginning to end their sales of electronic cigarettes and vapor products as concerns about the safety of the products continue to swirl around the industry.
The Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) is pulling e-cigarettes and vapor products from its on-base stores, according to the Stars and Stripes. The move goes into effect Sept. 30.
The decision, according to the report, follows a Sept. 12 warning from the Army Public Health Center to service members stop using vape products after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said vaping may be linked to hundreds of cases of severe lung disease and at least six deaths in dozens of states.
"Until the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state health departments to collect information on e-cigarette and vape products is complete … the Army & Air Force Exchange Service is removing these products from its assortment, effective close of business Sept. 30," Chris Ward, Dallas-based AAFES senior public affairs manager, told the news outlet.
The decision by AAFES comes as retail giant Walmart took a similar step last week. On Sept. 20, the Bentonville, Ark.-based chain said it will exit the sale of e-cigarette and vapor products after selling through its inventory, according to various news reports.
"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 said in a statement.
The decisions come as local, state and federal officials take a closer look at e-cigarettes and vapor products following reports of vape-related illnesses across the United States, as Convenience Store News previously reported.