REI said on Thursday that it would place a hold on any future orders with outdoor company Vista Outdoor. Vista Outdoor recently acquired several popular adventure brands that have long been featured in REI locations. Vista Outdoor also owns a company called Savage Arms. Savage Arms is a gun manufacturer that stocks semi-automatic “modern sporting rifles”. Such manufacturers are facing backlash after the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 people dead.
REI has been in discussions with Vista Outdoor for the past week. It was decided that the two companies’ relationship would be put on hold considering Vista Outdoor would not make a public statement “that outlines a clear plan of action” regarding common-sense gun control measures.
“REI does not sell guns. We believe that it is the job of companies that manufacture and sell guns and ammunition to work towards common sense solutions that prevent the type of violence that happened in Florida last month,” REI said in a statement. “We have decided to place a hold on future orders of products that Vista sells through REI while we assess how Vista proceeds. Companies are showing they can contribute if they are willing to lead. We encourage Vista to do just that.”
Other Companies React
Companies including Delta, Hertz, and MetLife have also terminated their relationships with the NRA in the weeks following the Parkland shooting.
CamelBak, one of the companies owned by Vista Outdoors, said efforts to boycott the brand were misplaced after another outdoor retailer, Canada’s Mountain Equipment Co-op, announced that it would suspend orders of the company’s products.
“Our brand falls within the Outdoor Products segment of our company, which operates separately from Vista Outdoor’s Shooting Sports segment,” CamelBak said in a statement. “Since 1989, CamelBak has been committed to forever changing the way people hydrate and perform. Our passion and love for the outdoors is unchanged. We are deeply committed to the individuals and communities we serve and we proudly partner with organizations to promote the enjoyment of the outdoors.“