retail news in context, analysis with attitude

• The National Grocers Association (NGA) said yesterday that "in anticipation of a vote on drug pricing legislation in the House Energy and Commerce Committee, over 40 independent grocery companies and state associations" sent a letter to Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi "asking that the House fix DIR fees and bring about reforms and transparency to pharmacy benefit managers … representatives from the independent supermarket industry advocated for an end to retroactive DIR fees and outlined the harm these fees have had on independent pharmacies."

"Independent supermarkets operate approximately 3,000 pharmacies across the country and are a vital component to keeping America’s communities vibrant and healthy. Pharmacy direct and indirect remuneration (DIR) fees have had a significant impact on our ability to conduct business and serve our communities. In many of the towns we serve, our pharmacies are one of the few options available for Medicare Part D beneficiaries to fill their prescriptions,” the letter said.


• E-cigarette company said yesterday that it no longer will sell fruit flavored products, responding to criticisms that such products primarily exist to addict young people. The move comes ahead of expected regulations from the Trump administration that would ban all flavored pods, leaving only tobacco flavored e-cigarettes on the market.

The decision also comes as health officials deal with a teen vaping epidemic and an outbreak of a deadly vaping-related lung disease.
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