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  #1  
Old 05 February 2014, 04:23 PM
Steve Steve is offline
 
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Default CVS To Stop Selling Tobacco, Sacrificing $2 Billion In Sales

CVS, the largest pharmacy chain in the United States, will stop selling cigarettes and other tobacco products in all of its 7,600 stores by October 1, its parent company CVS Caremark announced this morning. It is the first time any retailer has ever dropped this deadly cash cow, and it is part of a major shift in direction for the drugstore giant.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/matthewh...future-growth/
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  #2  
Old 05 February 2014, 05:40 PM
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Huh. Good on em', but I wish they'd also stop selling homeopathic crap too. It legitimizes it.
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  #3  
Old 05 February 2014, 05:55 PM
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My cousin worked for a small local drug store that had never sold tobacco products in its entire 40-year history. Even as recently as five years ago, she'd get the odd customer who was angry about that.
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  #4  
Old 05 February 2014, 05:58 PM
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They're just making room for marijuana products.
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  #5  
Old 05 February 2014, 06:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quink View Post
My cousin worked for a small local drug store that had never sold tobacco products in its entire 40-year history. Even as recently as five years ago, she'd get the odd customer who was angry about that.
IN Ontario they stopped selling Tobacco products in Pharmacies about 15-20 yeas ago --
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  #6  
Old 05 February 2014, 06:23 PM
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Curious - does that include businesses with pharmacies in them? Most grocery stores here have a pharmacy counter and cigarettes available at customer service. Something like Shopper's Drug Mart is billed as a drug store, but obviously steps beyond that. Would they be barred as well? (Note, I don't smoke and with cigarettes not being on display I couldn't even tell you for sure that smokes are available these days in these places in Alberta, but I'm curious how far the ban reaches in Ontario).

I did always find it a bit odd that you have to go to a liquor store to buy beer or wine, but could pick up smokes in a grocery store.
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  #7  
Old 05 February 2014, 06:30 PM
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I have not read the article, but I wonder if it is a bottomline decision, more than a 'because it is good for our customers' decision. The cash-flow is great but the profit per sale may not be, and the overall costs, including security, shrinkage, licensing, etc. may make it a dubious product line for them.
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  #8  
Old 05 February 2014, 06:42 PM
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I would recommend reading the article, it explains it pretty well. I think cigarettes are still quite profitable, but they want to go in a direction incompatible with carrying tobacco products.
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  #9  
Old 05 February 2014, 06:58 PM
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One of my clients is a big name supplier of tobacco, candy and such to convenience stores. There is a lot of money in tobacco. Much of it is in markup, but there is also a complex rebating process in which sellers make decent money in addition to the markup.
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  #10  
Old 05 February 2014, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rebochan View Post
Huh. Good on em', but I wish they'd also stop selling homeopathic crap too. It legitimizes it.
Yes, I get angry when I see chemists selling this rubbish, along with flower remedies and other unproven rot like that.

But I'm stunned that in this day and age that chemists ever sold tobacco. I don't ever remember seeing it here in Australia, or in Ireland and England where I have lived previously.
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  #11  
Old 05 February 2014, 07:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quink View Post
Something like Shopper's Drug Mart is billed as a drug store, but obviously steps beyond that. Would they be barred as well?
Yes, Shopper's does not sell any tobacco products. Further, when I think of other types of stores that have pharmaceutical sections (such as Walmart), they don't sell tobacco either.

Come to think of it, the only place where you really see tobacco products sold nowadays are in the convenience stores (e.g., corner stores, 7-11, gas stations, etc). Even then, there are strict rules about packaging and display. For example, all cigarettes must be kept out-of-site.

Rebochan: Unfortunately, there's no law to stop drug stores in Ontario from selling homeopathic items.

Ta ra 'wan,

Ieuan "Smoke on the water" ab Arthur
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  #12  
Old 05 February 2014, 08:22 PM
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My recollection of the details is not precise but I used to date a retired pharmacist's daughter. I had learned then that every pharmacy (basically the business that is a "dispensary" of restricted medications) in Ontario had to be owned by a pharmacist. This meant that the pharmacy within a department store was more like a sub-let of that business with the pharmacist who owned it. I imagine that it is the same in most other Canadian provinces, or at the very least, in Quebec. (see below) Where tobacco products were sold in that department store - and I'm not 100% sure if they were - I imagine that they could not be purchased at the pharmacy counter.

The ruling to prevent pharmacies from selling tobacco products was fairly mild in Ontario, compared to Quebec. One of the biggest pharmacy chains in Canada is owned by Jean Coutu - himself a pharmacist - who vigorously fought the same restriction in Quebec, and was even threatened with removal from the (self-governing) profession of pharmacists.
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  #13  
Old 05 February 2014, 08:35 PM
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Quote:
Sacrificing $2 Billion In Sales
That is an irrelevant statistic. It would be much more useful to know what the profit is on the cig's and perhaps an estimate of how much traffic the cig sales generates. Loosing $2B in sales that only generates a small amount of profit is no big deal. Cig prices are pretty competitive so the actual loss in profit may well be pretty close to zero.
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  #14  
Old 05 February 2014, 08:36 PM
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Did you find out that her dad was a pharmacist when you first went to her house after having bought condoms from him earlier that day?
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  #15  
Old 05 February 2014, 08:45 PM
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I wonder what they will put in that space. The space right behind the counter has got to be premium, right? Although, being behind the counter would make it undesirable for a lot of products.
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  #16  
Old 05 February 2014, 09:12 PM
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Well played GenYus, but no...he was in his 70's and retired before I even dated his daughter, and only maintained his part-ownership in 3 pharmacies.

Mad Jay - the space behind the counter often gets used for items which aren't available for sale to everyone. I have seen hard liquor, cigarettes, lighters, and ammunitition - and that is just in pharmacies. Not the counter serviced by the pharmacist - that's where they have certain "restricted" medical items like pseudoephedrine products, iron supplements, syringes and so on - but just the stuff that is age-restricted for sale.

I must admit that I didn't read the OP, but what's the CVS take on electronic cigarettes?
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  #17  
Old 05 February 2014, 09:21 PM
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The MI based chain, Meijer sells cigarettes and they have an instore pharmacy. There is also a very small local (to me) chain that has a pharmacy and sells cigarettes. I'm pretty sure our local WalMarts to also and they all have in store pharmacies.
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  #18  
Old 05 February 2014, 09:24 PM
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I don't know about other grocery stores in Ontario but I do know that Loblaws (or at least some of their stores anyway) do sell cigarettes and also have in-store pharmacies.
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  #19  
Old 05 February 2014, 09:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skeptic View Post
Yes, I get angry when I see chemists selling this rubbish, along with flower remedies and other unproven rot like that.
I agree. But what are flower remedies?
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  #20  
Old 05 February 2014, 10:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sylvanz View Post
The MI based chain, Meijer sells cigarettes and they have an instore pharmacy. There is also a very small local (to me) chain that has a pharmacy and sells cigarettes. I'm pretty sure our local WalMarts to also and they all have in store pharmacies.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sue View Post
I don't know about other grocery stores in Ontario but I do know that Loblaws (or at least some of their stores anyway) do sell cigarettes and also have in-store pharmacies.
From what Sue said - grocery stores which sell cigarettes tend to have them at only one checkout area - usually the "customer service" area where they also sell lottery tickets. This is kind of like how Wal-Marts here in the US will have hard liquor at only one checkout lane. This prevents one from paying for the "restricted" products at any other checkout lane, or the pharmacy counter. It's a lot like how you must pay for your pharmacy-specific purchases (including prescriptions) at the pharmacy counter, though you might be able to pay for other merchandise at the pharmacy counter.

Sylvanz - is it the same in Michigan where cigarettes (and maybe hard liquor) are only available through one specific area or checkout line?

What is this like in a place where cigarette sales are, for lack of a better word, less regulated? The last place I visited that still had smoking areas in restaurants was Charlotte, North Carolina, but my visit was so short that I never even set foot in a store.
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