Walmart raises minimum age to buy tobacco to 21


BENTONVILLE, Ark. (WHTM) – Walmart stores across the country have raised the minimum age to buy tobacco products and e-cigarettes to 21.

The new rules announced in May took effect July 1 at all its 5,300 U.S. stores, including its Sam’s Club warehouse locations.

The world’s largest retailer also said it will also stop selling fruit and dessert flavored e-cigarettes, which critics say can hook teenagers on vaping.

The changes came amid growing pressure from regulators to cut tobacco sales and use among minors.

Earlier this year, the Food and Drug Administration put Walmart and 14 other retailers on notice for selling tobacco products to kids.

In a letter to the FDA, Walmart said it would conduct its own tests to make sure minors can’t buy tobacco products at its stores. The company said it will retrain workers that fail its tests.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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