According to the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) website,, Supermarket Sales By Department 2015 (% of total supermarket store sales) 2014 Supermarket Sales of alcoholic beverages amounted to $21,296.639 (millions of dollars) or 4.4% of total grocery store sales. It is interesting to note that according to the 2014-2015 Global Retail Theft Barometer Supermarkets/Grocery Retailers experienced 1.35% stock shortage results. The number one shortage category under “Food and Beverages” was wines and spirits (pg. 55).  The GRTB goes on to report that approximately 50% of shortage in Supermarkets/ Grocery retailers is due to dishonest employees and 31% is due to shoplifting (pg. 54). My question to grocery store owners is this, “If 4.4% of your total sales are coming from the sale of alcoholic beverages and your number one category for shortage is from wines and spirits, what in the world are you doing to curb this threat to your business? If you haven’t given it much thought, I would like to suggest considering the use of bottle locks from Alpha Security. 


Bottle Locks are locking devices that fit over the tops of wine and liquor bottles. When securely placed on the top of the cap of a bottle the lock cannot be removed safely without the use of a detachment key. This means any attempted theft and tampering with a lock could likely result in a broken bottle. An Alpha bottle lock is also sensitive to electronic article surveillance (EAS) antennas meaning that if a shoplifter tries to sneak a bottle past EAS antennas the antenna alarm will be set off. This warning gives store employees an opportunity to respond to the alarm and recover the merchandise before it is removed from the premises.


As an anti-theft tool, bottle locks impact both internal and external theft.  Employees who may have been able to remove merchandise that was not protected by concealing product in bags, purses or under clothing are no longer able to do so without setting off an alarm. If proper procedures are enforced in a store, all alarm activations are treated the same and an inspection will reveal stolen merchandise. Employees and customers are equally subject to package checks and receipt reviews when they are the cause of an EAS antenna alarm. When employees know they are not exempted from scrutiny they tend to curtail dishonest activity. Shoplifters who have hit a store in the past shy away when they notice an EAS system is installed. 


Aside from preventing theft an added benefit of using Alpha Security bottle locks on wines and spirits is that the devices are reusable. The locks are placed on products at the store by staff and when a bottle is purchased it goes through the point of sale where the merchandise is rung up and the bottle lock is then removed. Usually a store will have a collection box at the register and the locks are gathered for placement on new product as it is received. Stores are not required to continually purchase new anti-theft devices, making this an economical means of protecting a business. For those business owners who are concerned with environmental issues, the ability to recycle and reuse bottle locks is something to consider. Alpha Security anti-theft products are designed to be used over and over again so that a business doesn’t have to purchase new replacements. 


If you sell wine or spirits in your grocery store and almost 4.5% of your sales come from this product line it is important to protect merchandise.  Using a bottle lock on each of your bottles is important, especially when this is the number one stolen item in grocery stores. 


Need information on bottle locks?  Give us a call at 1.770.426.0547 now.