Food price inflation tied to more theft in Skellefteå

Food prices have risen and with that, food thefts in Sweden have escalated. Meanwhile, in Skellefteå, traders talk about a small increase in theft.

Försiktig ökning av livsmedelstölderna i Skellefteå enligt handlare.

Försiktig ökning av livsmedelstölderna i Skellefteå enligt handlare.

Foto: Tomas Oneborg/SvD/TT

Skellefteå2023-07-25 11:08

With food prices rising in Sweden, instances of food theft have escalated, say reports from the Swedish supermarket sector. While traders in Skellefteå note an uptick, it's not deemed severe. Susanne Rindelöv, manager of Stora Coop Sörböle supermarket, says she has observed a slight increase in theft since the food price surge began.

Two women in their 20s were charged with theft for stealing meat and sweets valued at about 3,000 kronor from a Skellefteå grocery store, reflecting a nationwide trend. To curb theft, some stores across the country have resorted to locking up meat and closing self-checkout registers.

Stora Coop Sörböle, however, has chosen not to lock up their goods, maintaining that customers must have an unimpeded shopping experience. They've instead opted to reposition high-value items in staff-monitored areas. These strategies apply particularly during promotions, where high-value items like beef tenderloin are more accessible. Rindelöv adds that theft isn't limited to food but includes hygiene products and other goods.

Anton Hero, manager of fresh produce at Willys in Solbacken, concurs with Rindelöv, noting a slight increase in theft since food prices rose. Like Stora Coop Sörböle, Willys has adopted strategies to limit theft, such as displaying limited quantities of high-value items during promotions.

Conversely, ICA Maxi reports no rise in thefts and hasn't taken any preventive measures. Store manager Åke Persson confirms that they have not observed any increase in thefts concurrent with the rise in food prices.