A top U.S. regulator wants to meet with Walgreens leaders to discuss whether the drugstore chain has a problem with illegal tobacco sales to minors.
Scott Gottlieb of the Food and Drug Administration said Monday Walgreens is a top violator among drugstores that sell tobacco products including cigarettes, smokeless tobacco and e-cigarettes. He says inspectors have found nearly 1,800 instances since 2010 in which one of the company’s stores violated the law.
Deerfield, Illinois-based Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. runs more than 9,500 U.S. drugstores. Spokesman Jim Cohn says the company welcomes a meeting with the FDA. He says Walgreens prohibits tobacco sales to minors, and employees who violate that policy can be fired immediately.
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Walgreens rival CVS Health Corp. quit selling tobacco in its stores several years ago.
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