USA TODAYPublished 7:01 PM EDT Jul 20, 2020UPDATE: See the latest story about Winn-Dixie’s mask policy here.In a retail landscape rife with stores requiring masks, Winn Dixie won’t. A spokesperson from the grocery chain’s parent company, Southeastern Grocers, said it isn’t mandating face coverings during the pandemic to avoid “undue friction” between customers and staffers.”We strongly encourage state officials to lead the way in regulating these type of safety mandates,” Joe Caldwell, director of corporate communications at Southeastern Grocers, said in a statement emailed to USA TODAY. Winn Dixie, which has hundreds of locations throughout the Southern states, is “allowing associates to wear face masks” rather than requiring them, according to a statement on the parent company’s website.”We will continue to refine our processes and protocols in our stores, with health and safety as our guide, as long as this pandemic remains a threat,” the website says. Twitter’s cancel culture: A force for good or a digital witchhunt? The answer is complicated.Like many other grocery stores, Winn Dixie has installed floor decals and Plexiglas partitions at the checkout counter to encourage safety and social distancing. Still, people on social media have mixed feelings about the mask question, which was first reported by Fox News. Some praise the supermarket for giving patrons a choice, while others say not requiring masks is too risky. “Thank you #WinnDixie for offering adults a place to shop without wearing a mask! This is America! We should have freedom! I have a medical condition that prevents me from wearing a mask,” said Twitter user @Shariafighter. Another person tweeted: “We will not be shopping at your store. Enjoy your Grim Reaper special.”Not requiring masks stands out at a time when an increasing number of retailers are adding face-covering requirements for patrons and workers to curb the spread of the virus. Walmart, Target, CVS, Walgreens and Kroger are the biggest retailers to announce they will soon require masks at stores nationwide. Follow Dalvin Brown on Twitter: @Dalvin_Brown.