The supermarket giant announced Monday that it will no longer be recruiting or hiring for new positions.
The decision came in response to a new “flexible workforce” initiative, which was announced in January by President-elect Donald Trump and included “job-creation strategies” aimed at attracting new workers.
The goal of the initiative is to encourage workers to stay in their current positions to make room for new hires, the company said.
Kroger, which employs more than 8 million people in the United States, said in a statement Monday that the initiative “was intended to help our employees find the right jobs.”
Kroger said it was “not surprised by the president-elect’s actions.”
The company’s announcement comes a day after it was reported that Trump had offered to help the company hire as many as 20,000 new workers to fill its more than 1,000 stores nationwide.
“Kroger is committed to making sure our stores have the right people at the right place,” the company’s CEO, Peter Lewis, said Monday in a prepared statement.
“As part of this effort, we will continue to expand our hiring to meet demand.”
The news comes on the heels of a meeting of the US Labor Department’s new diversity committee, which has yet to announce its final recommendations.
Last week, the committee recommended that Kroger reconsider the hiring of more than 5,000 employees in 2018.
Krogreens said it will consider the committee’s recommendations as part of a comprehensive review of the company.
The company, which currently employs 1.4 million people worldwide, also announced a new initiative aimed at reducing workplace violence, including the hiring and firing of workers.
Krogemans CEO Peter Lewis said in his statement Monday the company will continue “to do everything we can to build a safer and more inclusive workplace.”
Krogems chief executive officer, John Mackey, said the company would be working with its U.S. and international affiliates to implement these initiatives.
“The world’s largest supermarket company will be working to address the needs of our customers, employees, and communities, and we are committed to helping our employees feel more secure, more valued, and better prepared to thrive,” he said in the statement.