Image of Walmart sign
MikeMozartJeepersMedia

Image of Walmart signMikeMozartJeepersMedia

Walmart has joined other national chains in announcing plans to end tobacco sales to people under 21, effective July 1.

The retailer also will stop sales of fruit and dessert-flavored vaping materials, popular with the young.

Federal legislation has been promised on a 21 legal smoking age. Tobacco companies are promoting it. Critics say this is to detract attention from the growing popularity of vaping, a non-tobacco, nicotine-delivery system.

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The Arkansas legislature included a 21 age — exempting people currently 19 or other and people in the military — as part of a tobacco lobby-influenced bill to raise money for UAMS cancer research from medical marijuana taxes. Tobacco and vaping got off without new taxes.