Recently CVS decided to pull all cigarettes from its shelves, including e-cigs and vapor related products that are non-FDA approved. This image cleanup is an obvious tactic to separate itself from its competitor Walgreens that is still selling cigarettes; a smart move on their behalf.
Generally, when a smoker (and there are a lot) needs to go to a convenient store, two competing stores will be placed side-by-side for competition. The smoker is obviously going to go with the store that carries what they want. In addition, most of the public could care less about cigarettes (when not being smoked around them). Obviously, Walgreens is going to secure more sales.
CVS may be clearing out the tobacco products to assert the clean and healthy image of living ‘smoke-free’. This tactic may work if cigarettes and e-cigs are astronomically affected in terms of taxes. One thing to note is that CVS, like Walgreens, carries booze. Everyone knows that alcohol is worse for the body than cigarettes.
Sure, come on in to CVS and pick up a case of beer, frozen lunch snacks and Robitussin, but don’t smoke cigarettes because they’re unhealthy. This move on CVS’s behalf could garner them positive attention from health advocates who are working desperately to further decline smoking, though the simple fact remains that buy NOT selling cigarettes, smokers will go elsewhere; probably to the neighboring store. That smoker won’t forget either, and by default will most likely continue going to that convenient store.
There is also the issue of civil liberty. Cigarettes are not illegal and by fazing them out of a major corporation which prides itself on having ‘all the essentials’, they are losing their customer base while also making asses out of themselves while they push on other competitors to do the same for their cause which I suppose CVS believes they are starting a revolution. What CVS needs to realize is that they are a convenient store, which means that if they want to secure sales they should be a place of convenience.
CVS is just one company out of dozens, and as CVS continues to release press releases and anti-smoking zeal, they are receiving press. If CVS is attempting to appeal to the anti-vape figures (is it ironic that CVS pulled all vaporizers and cigarettes, and was sure to mention e-cigs? Probably not!) then they will also simultaneously have the support of the tobacco industry, as ironic is that may sound. Right now, big tobacco is most concerned with annihilating vaping as if trends continue it has been estimated that vaping will overtake tobacco in about 20 years.
There is a war going on with health official in terms of smoking and vaping. While all of the concern rests on these two ‘vices’, alcohol still remains on all of the shelves; a major indicator that health and wellness is NOT the goal of CVS.