Stores

In DC, Giant Food bans large knapsacks and duffel bags to combat shoplifting

Other Washington supermarkets have introduced anti-theft measures, too.
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Giant Food

· less than 3 min read

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Thanks to retailers’ growing concerns about shoplifting, stores increasingly resemble claw machines, where what you want is on the other side of the glass and only time will tell whether someone shows up to unlock the NyQuil cabinet before your flu symptoms disappear.

Now Giant Food stores in Washington, DC, are introducing another measure to combat sticky fingers: Banning large bags.

While reusable shopping totes are still permissible, the ban covers closed bags like knapsacks and duffels larger than 14” x 14” x 6”, according to signs in Giant stores in the DC area.

“Giant Food initiated a new policy at select stores that are experiencing high shrink to mitigate the unprecedented levels of product theft that have become unsustainable for our business,” according to a statement from the chain in DC News Now. “The retail theft we are experiencing…limits product availability, creates a less convenient shopping experience, and, most critically, puts our associates and customers in harm’s way.”

Schick happens: In September, Giant Food announced that at one of its DC locations, on Alabama Avenue SE, it was removing frequently shoplifted items from its shelves, including Tide detergent, Schick razor blades, and Dove soap, and replacing them with products from its private label, CareOne.

Other supermarkets in the city have introduced their own anti-theft measures.

Harris Teeter told the Washington Post that it prohibited suitcases, roller bags, and large backpacks from some locations, and was checking shoppers’ receipts as they exited stores.

The Post also reported that some Safeways in DC had installed electronic gates that prevent customers from exiting unless they have a receipt.

Retail news that keeps industry pros in the know

Retail Brew delivers the latest retail industry news and insights surrounding marketing, DTC, and e-commerce to keep leaders and decision-makers up to date.