Tesco criticised after security tags placed on £2 sweets in Barking store
10:00 18 October 2016
Supermarket bosses have admitted that they went too far after security tags were stuck on confectionary worth just a few pounds.
Staff at Tesco Express in Barking plastered the yellow stickers on reduced Jelly Babies priced at just £2 and reduced Bassetts Liquorice Allsorts costing £2.10.
The tags, which set off alarms in the event of a theft, are placed on regularly targeted items – but a Tesco spokesman admitted it was excessive in this case after a shopper pointed out the measure on Wednesday.
“We always take care to understand which products need a security tag but it seems we’ve used a few too many on this occasion,” he said.
“Since our customer has pointed this out, colleagues in our Barking store have taken a little extra care identifying which products need a tag.”
The stickers, which appeared on sweets in the Ripple Road store at the start of October, were also placed on Wine Gums priced at £3.15 and reduced Lindt chocolates costing £3.50.
A shopper who spotted them contacted Tesco on Twitter, suggesting that the measure treated customers like criminals and stigmatised the borough.
Wishing to remain anonymous, she told the Post a Tesco representative told her via the social media site that the additional security was specific to the store due to high footfall.
“It’s quite shocking – these are items you’d usually associate with children,” she said.
“It’s making a statement about the area which is quite depressing and confirms people’s worst ideas.”
She said that staff, who also put the tags on Ferrero Rocher chocolates priced at £4.73, had behaved inappropriately to loyal customers.
“It looks like we’re being viewed as criminals,” she said.
“They’re only small items worth a few pounds – it’s petty.”
A Tesco spokesman said the supermarket uses data analysis of thefts to determine which items warrant a security sticker.
But he admitted that the stickers found on sweets in the store were placed by mistake and not due to any confectionary theft trend.