Beef is at top of shoplifters’ lists, Adweek reports

NEW YORK—Choice cuts of beef such as filet mignon are among the most-shoplifted merchandise in the country, trade publication Adweek reported recently.

Adweek cited a 21 percent increase in theft of “luxury meat” from stores between 2009 and 2011 and quotes U.S. Department of Justice sources as saying many police think beef “is the most common item stolen from grocery stores and supermarkets.”

Retail beef prices are about 10 percent higher than they were last year.

Liquor was second on Adweek’s list of most-shoplifted items, followed by electric tools, electronic devices, shaving products, AXE brand deodorants and body washes, designer clothing, the Let’s Rock Elmo and other popular toys, high-end fragrances and brand-name athletic shoes.

Jonah Bowles, agriculture market analyst for Virginia Farm Bureau Federation, noted that when gas prices started to climb a few years ago, “there was a much greater incidence of drive-offs at gas pumps. The same can be expected with higher meat prices at the grocery stores.”

Additionally, “alcohol consumption goes up as economies go down,” Bowles said. “So it’s not surprising that shoplifting in liquor stores would be higher as a result.”

Contact Bowles at 804-290-1117 or Pam Wiley, VFBF communications, at 804-290-1128.

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