After several years of selling rifles and ammunition at only one-third of its stores in the U.S., Walmart has decided to introduce the products back to store shelves in nearly half of its 3,600+ stores.
“We made a business decision to sell them in certain stores because we have realized the appeal was perhaps broader than we thought,” a Walmart rep tells the Wall Street Journal. “But we are committed to doing it responsibly as possible, as always, in compliance with all applicable local, state and federal laws.”
The Journal reports that most of the Walmarts where rifles are being reintroduced are in rural markets, some of these stores are in more urbanized areas like Spokane, WA, and Albuquerque.
The move comes as the nation’s largest retailer attempts to recover from seven straight quarters of declining sales. Walmart has already announced that it is cutting back on the amount of floor space dedicated to electronics in an attempt to get back to selling products like hunting and fishing gear, low-cost clothing, and fabric.
Additionally, Walmart recently realized that it had lost over $1 billion in sales by retooling stores in response to a perceived customer demand for less clutter.