Kroger to stop selling guns of all kinds

After recently imposing restrictions on the sale of firearms, ammunition and assault rifle-themed publications, Kroger (KR) has decided to stop selling guns altogether.

The nation's biggest supermarket chain on Monday said it it would phase out all sales of firearms and ammunition at its 132 Fred Meyer stores, which are located in four Western states: Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington. Kroger-branded stores do not carry firearms, and guns were still being sold at only 43 of Kroger's Fred Meyer locations, a company spokesperson emailed. 

The business decision came in response to "softening consumer demand" over the last few years and an effort to optimize space in its stores, Kroger said in its news release. The firearms category represented about $7 million in annual revenue and "sales continue to decline," according to the company release.

The retailer, which stopped selling assault-style rifles in its Fred Meyer stores several years ago, on March 1 announced it would no longer sell guns to those under 21, saying "recent events demonstrate the need for additional action."

Other retailers also reacted to the Feb. 14 slayings of 17 students and faulty at a high school in Parkland, Florida. Walmart (WMT) banned the sale of guns and ammo to anyone under 21, and Dick's Sporting Goods (DKS) prohibited the sale of assault-style rifles and raised the minimum age to purchase for other firearms to 21. 

A slew of companies also ended discount programs with the National Rifle Association amid a corporate backlash against the gun-rights lobbying organization that followed the latest school massacre. 

One company, Delta Air Lines (DAL), said it was trying to stay neutral in the debate by discontinuing discounts to NRA members. Yet the carrier was targeted by Georgia lawmakers, who voted to punish it by killing a state tax break for the Atlanta-based airline.