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The double whammy of inflation and rising crime has caused at least one New York City store to enclose its Spam inventory in a plastic case.
Shoppers, store workers and social media users expressed disbelief after discovering the $3.99 canned meat product out of reach behind the lock and key in a Duane Reade inside the depot New York Port Authority bus station, the The New York Post reported.
“I’ve never seen this before!” a cashier laughed as he removed Spam from his plastic anti-theft liner.
“Some of this stuff is pretty ridiculous,” said Jenny Kenny, a 43-year-old Kentucky visitor who says she knew about the city’s crime spike but still couldn’t believe it. there were “so many” items in boxes.
Other shoppers wondered why the spam, plus the $1.89 cans Starkist Tunawere locked in while more expensive products like Amy’s $5.49 cans of soup were not.
“Putting spam in a cage is stupid — and a little insulting to customers who would buy it,” said Dennis Snow, a 46-year-old marketer.
Crime in New York is up this year in six of seven major categories, and the New York Post reported that petty theft complaints are up 52% in the Port Authority compound compared to last year.
“I don’t think they’re stopping anything,” a store clerk named Iggy said of the burglary business. “It’s a theater of security. If you really needed it, you’d trample it.”
Just days ago, Iggy’s suspicions seemed well-founded when a man in a black tank top walked out of the store with a $38 electric razor after asking an employee to remove it from the plastic case.
Spam can still be found in many places in New York without the plastic cover, including Duane Reade locations near Times Square.
“Here we lock up ice cream,” said a West 44th Street employee Duane Reade.