Walmart Slashes Much of Its Ammo Stock, Tells Customers Not To Open Carry Guns in Stores
The nation’s largest brick-and-mortar retailer says it will no longer sell handgun ammunition.
It’s just one of gun-related changes the company is making following a series of high-profile mass shootings, including one in Odessa, Texas, last week in which seven people were killed.
“The Bentonville, Arkansas-based discounter said Tuesday it will stop selling short-barrel and handgun ammunition after it runs out of its current inventory,” The Associated Press reported.
“It will also discontinue handgun sales in Alaska, marking its complete exit from handguns and allowing it to focus on hunting rifles and related ammunition only.”
In a memo to employees, Walmart CEO Doug McMillon discussed the reason for the changes.
“We know these decisions will inconvenience some of our customers, and we hope they will understand,” he said. “As a company, we experienced two horrific events in one week, and we will never be the same.”
“We have a long heritage as a company of serving responsible hunters and sportsmen and women, and we’re going to continue doing so,” McMillon’s memo reads.
Walmart is also requesting that customers who are not law enforcement officers no longer open carry guns while in the store.
This change, McMillon said, is due in part to the fact that some customers have either purposefully or accidentally frightened store associates and fellow customers by open carrying.
Walmart will use a “non-confrontational approach” to enforce this policy, he said, as well as treat “law-abiding customers with respect.”
“In a complex situation lacking a simple solution, we are trying to take constructive steps to reduce the risk that events like these will happen again,” McMillon’s memo reads.
“The status quo is unacceptable,” it says.
Walmart stopped selling modern sporting rifles in 2015. The company has not sold handguns in stores around the country — with the exception of Alaska — since the mid-1990s.
“The retailer also doesn’t sell large-capacity magazines … or bump stocks, nor the AK-style firearm that was used by the El Paso shooter,” the AP noted.
Walmart believes these new moves will reduce its market share of ammunition significantly, from around 20 percent to as low as 6 percent.
“We believe it will likely drift toward the lower end of that range, over time, given the combination of these changes,” McMillon’s memo reads.
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