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Wednesday, August 10, 2022

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Cost of living drives grocery stores to lock food away in security boxes as it 'gets stolen too much'

As the cost of living crisis continues, supermarkets are now taking drastic measures to protect their goods from theft. Picture: @Celeste_Tam42/Twitter

As the cost of living crisis continues, supermarkets are now taking drastic measures to protect their goods from theft. Picture: @Celeste_Tam42/Twitter

Published Jul 27, 2022

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Security tags normally found on high-value meats, alcohol, medication, and cosmetics are now being placed on typically cheaper items in some stores in the UK.

Social media users have shared photos of the security tags at certain locations of stores like Aldi and Tesco.

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One man spotted his local Aldi store keeping £3.99 (R80) blocks of cheddar under lock and key, similar to what you would find on some cosmetics and alcohol.

Posting a picture to Twitter, it showed the cheese, while a second picture showed an £8 (R160) steak from Co-op inside a "GPS-protected" security box.

Another video posted on TikTok by user Amber Garcia, shows her pulling out blocks of Cathedral City cheese, which have been placed in security cases.

Garcia captioned the video: “When the cost of living goes up… #tesco #costofliving.”

The video has been viewed over two million times and received over 2 000 comments from users.

@amberrosegarcia When the cost of living goes up… #tesco #costofliving ♬ original sound - user9758730075555

In such cases, a member of store staff has to remove the equipment before the customer can leave, otherwise, an alarm will be set off.

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“Civil unrest is coming,” one user wrote.

Another commented: “Cheese is one of the most shoplifted items in the UK. It comes above batteries and coffee." While a third added: "It's sad that it's come to that, I am surprised we are not being taxed for breathing air." And then there were of course people who could not help but make some cheesy comments, with one writing: "That’s nacho cheese."

Reports reveal that the security measures may have something to do with soaring dairy costs in the UK, with driving factors including Brexit, the Russia and Ukraine war, and pre-existing supply chain disruption caused by the pandemic.

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Read the latest IOL Food DigiMag here.

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