Why Does CVS Hate Christmas?

NOT at a CVS near you! (or at least one near me) Photo courtesy of flickr user WELS.net, used under a Creative Commons license.

by Sara Mead

Over the weekend, I needed to acquire some candy canes for a holiday cookie related project (more on that later this week), so I went to the CVS across the street from my house. No Candy Canes! There was a small section of holiday-themed candy, but it was almost all red & green M&Ms, peppermint and mint truffle Hershey’s Kisses, and a few sad looking boxes of Russel Stovers. Not a candy cane (or other traditional Christmas candy) in sight. Feeling like an idiot, I asked the woman behind the register: “Do you have candy canes? ” She shook her head.

Now, in fairness, the CVS near my house is located in a doublewide trailer that doesn’t provide a lot of room for inventory, including special holiday merchandise, so I was almost willing to give them a pass. But today, I went to a CVS near my office–same pathetically weak display of Christmas candy! (Un)fortunately, I work in downtown D.C., where there is a CVS just about every .25 blocks, so I marched up the street a bit to the next one, which offered a slightly better showing of Christmas candy. But the only candy canes to be found were a single box of Life Savers flavored candy canes. Gross!

It’s almost enough to make someone believe there’s a War on Christmas after all.

6 responses to “Why Does CVS Hate Christmas?

  1. That’s a lotta stores that the candy cane salesman didn’t get an order from, something like 5,000.

    We’re talking about a million piece order.

    Being in the business I’m stunned.

  2. They have plenty left over from last year–just give them time to haul them out of the warehouses.

  3. For what it’s worth, my CVS in Nashua, NH has a wide selection of candy canes. Maybe it’s a regional thing?

  4. My local CVS in suburban Maryland has a nice selection of candy canes as well. Since it’s a big CVS, I’m assuming the size of the stores in DC has something to do with it.

  5. Its probably a regional thing. Living previously in NH, and currently in NC…I can tell you most stores south of Washington DC suck. CVS was originally started as a small chain in the Northeast and then gradually starting buying smaller chains and converting them. This leads to a few problems. First you have employees/management who have to adapt to the new business practice, then you get stores that were converted from some obscure business, to a small drug chain, then to a CVS. Which is the issue with some of the CVS stores here – you get a building that was originally a meat packing plant, then converted to a Revco Drug Stores, which was acquired by CVS and rebranded. So you get a weird looking store run by a bunch of people who run it like its Revco. The corp. office of CVS is in Rhode Island, so a lot of what made them special in New England is lost in communication outside of that area.

  6. I know the CVS in Penn Quarter skipped Halloween completely and had Santas in its windows when I walked past in mid-October. You need to buy your candy canes immediately after Halloween. The closer you get to Christmas the more they begin to shift inventory away from things that they know won’t sell after Christmas.

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