Phillip Morris has given up its battle against San Francisco and the passing of an ordinance that bans the sale of tobacco in drugstores.

PublicCEO reported in September on this San Francisco ordinance that affects 60 drugstores throughout the city.

San Francisco is the first city in the country to place a ban on tobacco sales in drugstores.

Phillip Morris, the number one cigarette manufacturer in the United States, argued the ordinance violated its First Amendment right to free speech. 

“San Francisco’s local officials have the right and the duty to protect public health, and in this case they have a compelling rationale,” City Attorney Dennis Herrera said.

“Consumers – and especially young people – should reasonably expect pharmacies to serve their health needs, not to enable our leading cause of preventable death.”

The ordinance being defended by the attorney’s office prohibits San Francisco’s nearly 60 drugstores from selling cigarettes and other tobacco products. 

In February 2009, a city in Boston adopted a similar ban that prohibits the sale of tobacco in drug stores and on college campuses.

Louis Dettorre can be reached at