Tide Laundry Soap Is Currency For Drugs. Apparently.

[ 5 ] March 13, 2012 |

At least that’s one of the scenarios that my local news put out today after a man was found to have stolen $25,000 worth of Tide liquid detergent over a 15-month period. Yes, that is what I heard — stolen from stores in record numbers, Tide laundry soap is currency for drugs. Apparently.

Or sold to Mom & Pop Shops at a discount.

Or sold to regular people who can’t afford the high prices charged in stores so that they, too, can have ultra clean laundry.

They think.

The police and media, I mean. Not the people buying hot laundry soap. Because they don’t care, they’re getting a deal on soap. That shit is expensive, y’all. With the economy in the crapper and gas prices nearly four and a half bucks a gallon, you’ve got to make concessions and cutbacks somewhere, right? Washing clothes at a laundromat isn’t cheap. Plus, what the hell do drug dealers need with cash anyway? They need clean clothes more than greenbacks, right? Gotta look fly when you’re enticing the kids to buy your wares. They can’t actually look like the smelly, skanky drug pushers they truly are, right?


CVS stores have even put Tide on lock-down, saying drug users have targeted Tide in much the same way they have targeted flu medications.

Damn those druggies for making everything more difficult for us law-abiding citizens! Baby formula has been locked up for years because of it’s use in the manufacture of methamphetamine. I already have to show my license and sign a form when I buy cold medicine for my daughter or myself, now I’m going to have to do the same thing with laundry detergent. I’ll bet they’ll limit the amount of them I can buy at one time, too. What if I have some really dirty wash to do and need more soap than usual? Will the cops come to my house to make sure I’m not selling it on the black market or hoarding it for the aftermath of the 2012 Apocalypse?

And what if I am? Will I get arrested for wanting clean clothes post-apocalypse?

Fucking meth-heads. Always screwing it up for everyone else.

Near Minneapolis, cameras caught 53-year-old Patrick Costanzo stealing more than $25,000  worth of the product over the course of 15 months.

“It’s like he put the pieces in there like Tetris pieces. He maximized that cart, there’s no wasted space,” said investigator Sean Melville of the West St. Paul police.

Costanzo would load up his cart and push right past workers. He’d also take paper towels, soda and toilet paper.

“There’s no way he can be using,” said Melville. “I hope for his own sake he’s not using that much toilet paper everyday.”

Authorities finally put an end to the sudsy spree, but with a retail price from $10 to $20 this household laundry staple has become a kind of currency of the streets. It can sell on the black market for half the price and with no serial number it’s impossible to track.

“Tide is highly recognizable, it’s very difficult to trace and it’s easily resold,” said Brad Garrett, former FBI special agent.

According to law enforcement officials, the Procter & Gamble clothes cleaner has become part of the dirty drug trade. A recent drug sting in Maryland turned up more Tide than cocaine and according to police it was not just one guy, but an organization that would hit four to five stores a day.

“It may be more financially viable for the drug dealer to exchange Tide for drugs and then resell the Tide,” Garrett told ABC News.

Using video surveillance and undercover officers, police in Prince George’s County, Md., arrested 18 people after being contacted by a Safeway about thefts.

Here’s my issue with this: when I have shopped at Wal-Mart, I am always stopped at the door and asked to show my receipt for what’s in my cart. Can’t be stealing from Wal-Mart now. So how in the hell did Costanzoy get away with stealing $25, 000 worth of Tide liquid detergent??? And no one noticed anything? Nothing just a little odd that a guy with a full cart walked out of the store without paying a dime?

Sounds like the Minneapolis Wal-Marts need a refresher course on store policies.

Tide will likely raise prices on their products because of these thefts. It’s called shrinkage. When shrinkage is high in a store or on a particular product, the prices are hiked up to compensate the manufacturer for lost revenue. This is why the prices of items in the same chain store can be different depending on where the store is located. Higher shrinkage area equals higher prices.

It’s how corporations keep the poor people poor and let the rich get richer. And save more money than the po’ folk.

I used to work Loss Prevention for Marshalls eons ago. That’s how I know these things. Plus I’m damn smart.


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Category: The Free Range Stupid

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I'm Shan and I 'm the creator of The Asylum and a magnet for The Free Range Stupid™. I'm a little nutty, a lot sarcastic and pretty damn smart. I am also a graphic designer, blog coder, virtual assistant, free lance writer and can whip you up a killer resume, media kit or press release that would make others green with envy. Go to Skewed Design Studios to check out my services. You won't be disappointed.

Comments (5)

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  1. 06grands says:

    Unfortunately, the answer as to how the thief made off without being caught is simple, they may simply not care enough to have anyone checking exits from the stores by customers with unbagged merchandise. Several years ago I witnessed a thief of merchandise and told a store employee while the culprits were still loading up their car. The employee shrugged and stated that it was not her job to act as security. So I stood and watched as did several others, as the 5 finger discounters finished loading their car and proceeded to drive away. But why were these people stealing TIDE and what other uses are there except for dirty laundry?

    • Shan says:

      I have no clue. I guess the authorities think it may be used as an ingredient in drug manufacturing. Or that laundry soap is now more valuable than cash or drugs.

      What The Free Range Stupid do always shocks me.

  2. OK, this is news to me. It falls under that, “What will they think of next” category. So, cleanliness is no longer next to Godliness, I guess.
    Margaret (Nanny Goats) recently posted..Are You Better Off Than You Were a Year Ago?My Profile

  3. Why is there always someone who ruins it for the rest of the class?
    Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell recently posted..All Washed Up – WWMy Profile

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