Liquor store theft is a problem and if a store owner fails to use Sensormatic hard tags on products they could end up with situations like these:

  • “Foursome sought in theft of liquor at a Cape Coral Publix”, WFTX Digital Team, May 09,2019. This group was believed to have stolen, “…six bottles of Jonnie Walker Black Label, five bottles of Belvedere Vodka, and two bottles of Hennessey.” I did some research and it appears that a total value of $500 would be a middle of the road estimate for the stolen merchandise.
  • “Man walks out of Costco with 24 bottles of Hennessey liquor, police say”, May, 06, 2019 According to this story the suspect took the alcohol and “Officers said he also took a Lorex brand home security system. The goods were worth about $1,500.” The Lorex system could be as much as $999. If this is the unit stolen that means the alcohol was valued at approximately $500.


Interestingly enough while reviewing news articles I also happened upon one titled, “23% drop in thefts show strategy to curb shoplifting working: Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries”,, May 30, 2019. I was curious as to what strategies this business has employed to make such an impact. According to the article several strategies are now being used which include adding new Loss Prevention Officers, “checking customers’ ID at the doors of Liquor Marts, using bottle locks (added emphasis mine) and lockable shelf cases, and requiring customers to ask sales staff for high-value bottles.”  While I am not a fan of locking showcases or making merchandise inaccessible I AM in favor of using the Sensormatic systems Bottle Cap Tag to prevent theft.


 In my opinion it only makes sense to use alternatives to locking showcases whenever possible. Showcases require too much attention on the part of store employees to assist patrons who want to get something out of lock-up. Employees could be ringing up other transactions, upselling or suggestive selling merchandise to new customers or even be completing tasks. To stop what you are doing simply to unlock merchandise you have locked up to stop shoplifting is poor use of resources. Sensormatic hard tags are an alternative to locking showcases. Shoppers can select what they want and continue to browse a store (which often leads to more sales) without waiting on an employee who may not be able to assist for several minutes. Not only does the patron begin to look at their watch as the minutes tick by they may feel pressured to hurry up and leave. The risk of losing the sales increases and the more time that goes by the less inclined they will be to look around and perhaps add to their shopping basket.


Locking up merchandise may stop shoplifting but it also hinders sales. Those stores that use a Sensormatic systems and Sensormatic hard tags have nearly the same level of security as stores that use the display cases but also have better opportunities to increase sales. But you may be wondering how a Bottle Cap Tag on a bottle of Hennessey can be better protection than that lock-up case. The Bottle Cap Tag has electronic article surveillance built in so if a crook attempts to walk out with a stolen bottle the alarm pedestals will alert store employees to the criminal activity. The vast majority of shoplifters are not anxious to set off alarms and be seen. They know that most stores have security cameras and will review them and then contact police. The other thing is the bottle tag covers the top of the bottle. The cap of the bottle cannot be removed without breaking the bottle defeating the purpose of stealing in the first place.


 In my Loss Prevention experiences I have worked extensively with Sensormatic systems so I am keenly familiar with how much of a deterrent effect they have on shoplifters. I have recovered merchandise dropped by shoplifters when they have set off alarm pedestals. I have also observed potential thieves look at merchandise and then put it back on a shelf when they find it has an anti-shoplifting tag on it. Tagging merchandise is a tactic proven over time to stop shoplifting where it is implemented.


Alcohol theft continues to be a major concern for grocery and alcohol and beverage stores. Failing to protect merchandise only leads to more theft as criminals learn which businesses are easiest to target. That in turn can lead to more serious criminal activity such as robberies and assaults. Using Sensormatic hard tags is the optimum solution for addressing theft and improving sales in the long term.


For more information about Sensormatic hard tags contact us or call 1.770.426.0547