The Disappointing Reason An Aldi Store Has No Steaks On Its Shelves

Nowadays, trips to the grocery store might have us contemplating if it's actually cheaper to spend all the time and effort preparing food at home instead of going out to eat. According to the USDA's Economic Research Service's March report, food prices will likely rise 4.5% to 5% across the board in 2022 (via USA Today). Items like meat have especially been affected, with beef prices rising by 22.8% to 43.9% over the past year (via Spectrum News 1). On top of that, recent years have seen tens of millions of Americans face financial hardship and the threat of hunger (via The Washington Post). Against the backdrop of those difficulties, increasing numbers of people have resorted to extreme measures to get food on the table.

Shoplifting started to become a widespread problem during the pandemic, but it wasn't high-value items like TVs or electronics, people were stealing basic necessities. "It's a very different kind of crime — it's people stealing consumables and items associated with children and babies," Jess Zisner, chief executive of workplace security firm Aegis, told The Washington Post. In order to combat this increase in shoplifting, some stores have added extra security. The threat of theft also led to a disappointing scene at one Aldi store.

This Aldi store was experiencing high levels of theft

An unspecified Aldi location had a simple, yet elegant solution for preventing beef theft. TikToker @315brittany recently shared a video of an empty steak shelf at Aldi to the tune of "Thrift Shop" by Macklemore and Ryan Luis. The display had a sign on it (see photo above) explaining that the steaks had to be put away due to theft. Although this might sound extreme to some, when it comes to food shoplifting, a 2019 report by the U.K.-based Center for Retail Research identified packaged meat, coffee, and cheese as some of the most frequently stolen foods.

One TikTok user predicted a dismal-sounding future for grocery stores in the comments: "Soon its all going to be in vending machines or online order only," said @akrippa. They may not be far off because this isn't the first time drastic security measures have been taken in the meat section. Another viral TikTok shows a package of steak at a Walmart that is locked up with a security tag on it. "It's high stakes these days," commented @wizardoftictok.