Kroger and Total Wine are removing Russian-produced vodka from store shelves, joining other retailers in a symbolic move

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Kroger has pulled Russian-produced vodka from its shelves in support of Ukraine, a company spokesman said Tuesday.

“As an American grocer, Kroger is taking action to show our support and solidarity with Ukraine. Over the weekend, we removed Russian-produced vodka from our shelves, and today we are sending emergency food aid to support refugees through a grant from The Kroger. Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation to the United Nations World Food Program Ukraine Emergency Fund. We will match all donations made by our associates and clients, up to $250,000.

The Cincinnati-based grocer has nearly 2,800 stores in 35 states. In Texas, its stores are prohibited from selling alcohol.

Kroger joins a slew of other liquor stores in removing Russian-produced vodka from the United States and Canada since Russia invaded Ukraine on Thursday for control of its capital kyiv.

Among these is the national chain Total Wine & More, which posted a photo of their bare shelves on Monday on Facebook.

“Today this is what you will see in our stores. In support of the people of Ukraine, we have removed all Russian-made products from our shelves,” the message read.

The move also comes after a number of governors across the United States, including Texas Governor Greg Abbott, called on restaurants, bars and retailers to remove Russian-origin brands from store shelves. .

“I have called on members of the Texas Restaurant Association, the Texas Package Stores Association and all retailers in Texas to voluntarily remove all Russian products from their shelves,” Abbott tweeted on Saturday. “Texas stands with Ukraine.”

In Canada, a professor at the University of New Brunswick who has worked on democratic reforms in Russia, Ukraine and Kasakhstan told CBC News that wasting or refusing to sell Russian products is not a punishment.

“It’s certainly symbolically important for those of Ukrainian descent,” Henryk Sterniczuk told CBC. “But … from an economic point of view, it’s not very significant.”

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