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Rite Aid Settles Expired-Products Charges

BRIEFLY / RETAILING

July 03, 1999|Bloomberg News

Rite Aid Corp. will pay $1.4 million to settle charges that it sold expired products in stores throughout California. The drugstore chain agreed to pay a $700,000 civil penalty; $400,000 in restitution; and $300,000 to reimburse the city of San Diego and Merced, Alameda and Santa Barbara counties, among others. Local prosecutors in California had won a temporary restraining order against the Camp Hill, Pa.-based chain last month, after suing Rite Aid and its Thrifty Payless Inc. subsidiary for allegedly selling infant formula, contraceptives and other goods well after their expiration dates. As part of the settlement, Rite Aid will post signs in about 640 stores in California for three months informing customers who purchased out-of-date goods that they may obtain a refund or exchange. "We are pleased we were able to reach an agreement . . . that benefits consumers," said Rite Aid spokeswoman Sarah Datz. "We apologize to any customers that may have purchased out-of-date products from Rite Aid." Rite Aid shares fell 38 cents to close at $25.25 on the NYSE.

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