There seems to be a new taste for high priced specialty spirits. With the boom in craft distilleries and new cocktails being all the rage, many retailers have also seen a big rise in thefts of these products. It’s all about supply and demand. The people demanding the products are willing to pay, and the people willing to steal from the suppliers are pulling off more daring heists than ever. If your inventory is not protected with bottle locks now, you should consider them after reading this.
The following instances have all been reported in local newspapers, evening newscasts, and internet news sites. These were all produced by just a couple of keyword searches. Although all amounts are reported at retail, don’t forget there is an associated cost to the retailer as well. Unfortunately, none of these stores had any type of liquor bottle security tools in place. They all relied on their clerks behind the counter and in some cases, their loss prevention associates.
*A pair of men stole about $500,000 worth of high end vodka from one package store during one rush hour. This was a specialty store that only deals with this type of highly coveted products and brands at exorbitant prices.
*Four men stole $16,000 worth of wine and liquor in sixteen different instances. Their biggest one time haul was $3,700.
*One rare fifty year old bottle of whiskey, worth $26,000, concealed in a shoulder bag and never seen again. (Authorities have no leads on this one.)
*A group of three women on a “shopping” spree went store to store stealing. They racked up over $7,000 worth of wine in one week.
There were many more stories; that’s just a sampling of the newest ones. I work for a small retail pharmacy, and if I lost that much inventory in one day, I’d be fired. I realize the type of store is totally different, but in my store, we utilize bottle locks. That’s one small difference that means my wines and spirits aren’t walking out the door. These are tools offered by Alpha Security that, in my mind, has been designed for two big reasons. One: to give sellers of wines and spirits peace of mind. Two: to make it almost impossible for thieves to get away with those wines and spirits. These awesome gadgets fit right over the tops of almost any size bottle. If the criminal makes any attempt to remove or tamper with the bottle lock, it has the capability to self-alarm. Basically, the only way the cap is coming off is if it is removed at the checkout with the proper key. Otherwise, the bottle itself will more likely shatter before the bottle lock is going to come off. If they’re going to steal an extremely old $26,000 bottle of whiskey, they probably either plan to drink it or sell it. I’m just saying. But if it’s got a bottle lock on it, they’re out of luck. If I’m that crook and I see you’ve got bottle locks on your entire inventory, I’ll quickly decide to go somewhere else to steal my booze.
That’s the biggest key reason to invest in bottle locks. Deterrence of theft is so much more effective than chasing shoplifters. Having liquor bottle security can mean two different things for your store: word gets out in the community that your store always prosecutes thieves, or word gets out that there’s no use to try and steal from your store. I think the return on investment here is a no brainer.
For more information on Bottle Locks, contact us or call 1.770.426.0547