As part of a broader attempt to drive traffic and boost sales, Walgreens CEO Gregory Wasson says the chain will start selling beer and wine in its aisles with 12 to 18 months. "There are no sacred
cows in Deerfield," Wasson says. "Everything is up for evaluation."
Walgreens, which started selling beer, wine and spirits at the end of Prohibition, got out of the business in the early
1990s, citing the complexity and cost of operating the department. There also was some question as to whether it fit with the company's health-and-wellness image, Sandra M. Jones reports. It will only
sell beer and wine this time around.
The category is expected to account for less than 1% of store shelf space, but Walgreens hopes it will attract consumers who will then purchase other
products, Wasson says. Mainstream beer and a few imports and microbrews will be displayed in a 4½-foot-wide cooler, a Walgreens spokesman says, and there will be 12 feet of shelf space for a
selection of moderately priced wine.
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