Almost all Scottish c-store retailers experience theft on a daily basis, according to the Scottish Grocers Federation (SGF).

Shoplifting remained the most common form of crime, with 97% of stores experiencing theft on a daily basis, the SGF’s latest crime report revealed. It also found that 100% of those surveryed said they had experienced some form of in-store crime.

SGF research also showed that 98% of respondents experienced incidents of verbal or physical abuse on a regular basis. Most often, these incidents where caused by workers refusing to sell customers certain items or requesting age-verification.

SGF chief executive Pete Cheema said: “Our third annual crime report shows that in-store crime remains a significant issue, with no real improvement in the overall picture. Incidents of abuse have actually increased slightly. It is the human cost of retail crime that is of most concern: the consequences can be extreme and impact not only on retailers but on their families, their customers and on communities.”

Abuse and violence are subjects that will feature prominately in today’s SGF Retail Crime Seminar, taking place at Tulliallan Castle in Fife.

In the last two weeks, MSP Daniel Johnson has also announced proposals for new legislation to protect Scottish shop workers from violence. The SGF has supported the plans and will work closely with the Edinburgh MSP to tackle retail crime. 

Recent figures from the Office for National Statistics show that incidents of shoplifting in England and Wales increased by 10% in the 12 months ending September 2017.