pam in locked container on CVS shelf (l) CVS branded basket (c) CVS customer trying to unlock box of Spam (r)

Kevin McGovern/Shutterstock @darbs93/TikTok (Licensed) Remix by Caterina Cox

‘The fact that Spam cost $6 to begin with’: CVS customer finds Spam locked in box on shelf

'Valuable item.'


Stacy Fernandez


Posted on Sep 26, 2023

Every day, more and more household items, from toothpaste to laundry detergent, are being locked up at major retailers like Target, Walmart, CVS, and Walgreens. This practice is leaving shoppers frustrated and impatient.

Now the practice has even hit Spam containers, which were once a low-cost meat product commonplace in many households and cultures.

In a viral video, Darby Young (@darbs93) is filming inside a CVS in New York City when she notices that boxes of Spam and Libby’s corned beef are locked inside of plastic containers twice the product’s size.

“They locked the Spam,” Young says in the video with a tone of surprise.

She grabs one of the boxes but is unable to open the mechanism on the container, instead needing an employee to unlock the item.

“Strange,” she adds at the end of the video.

@darbs93 Can someone please explain to me why they lock the Spam up at the CVS in New York?! 🤣🥴 #newyork #weirdthings #someonepleaseexplain #cvs #newyorkcity #travels #summeradventures #fyp ♬ Funny – Gold-Tiger

Spam is just one of the many items that are being locked up at major retailers in some shape or form. In recent years, customers have seen locked plexiglass and plastic locks on the end of product hangers pop up at the stores they frequent. As a result, they need to push a sometimes not functional button and wait until an employee shows up (or they go out of their way to get them) so they can unlock the product.

The Daily Dot has previously covered shoppers who were so frustrated or anxious about the experience that they just left the store without the item they needed.

“Joke’s on you, Target, I have really bad anxiety, and if I have to ask for someone to help me get something, I’m not gonna buy it. So you just lost hundreds of dollars from me,” one TikToker said when confronted with locked beauty products.

Another person showed that even literal steaks at Walmart had a metal mesh enclosure to deter shoplifting meat.

KQED spoke to a Target representative who said locked items vary from city to city, and the corporation is aware that it’s causing them to lose out on customer business.

“No retailer wants to lock up product,” Jason Brewer, executive vice president of the Retail Industry Leaders Association, told KQED. “It is a last resort. But it’s only done when it’s impossible to keep a specific product on the shelf.”

Young’s clip of the locked Spam has garnered more than 320,000 views and over 700 comments as of Tuesday morning.

“Can someone please explain to me why they lock the Spam up at the CVS in New York?!” Young wrote in the caption.

Viewers shared their perspectives in the comments section.

“The fact the companies will pay extra to lock the food products instead of bringing the price down a bit,” the top comment read.

“I can unfortunately add that at work some people have opened cans before (with the key attachment),eaten the food, then left it empty on some shelf,” another person said.

“The fact that spam cost $6 to begin with is mind boggling,” a further user wrote about the price.

The Daily Dot reached out to Young via TikTok comment and to CVS via email.

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*First Published: Sep 26, 2023, 8:33 am CDT