Food shoplifting on the rise

Posted by Editorial on 16th April 2009

As unemployment rose last year so did the incidence of alcohol and food theft, according to a Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research report released yesterday.

The research, from New South Wales, discovered food shoplifting surged by 17 per cent last year as almost two cases were reported, on average, each day.

Alcohol was first on the list for thieves, as retail shoplifting rose by 7.8 per cent.

“It is a telling fact that in the last 12 months the types of items stolen from retail stores have shifted away from sunglasses, jewellery, and other luxury items, toward food, alcohol, razor blades and even underwear,” NSW Shadow Police Minister, Mike Gallacher, said. “This is only the beginning.”

A store detective told The Daily Telegraph that he has already noticed a change in the people often caught shoplifting.

“When times get tough the sort of people we’ve caught stealing food aren’t the ones you would normally see – they’re not the people who would normally steal. We’ve seen some pretty sad cases,” he said.