Why Does Safeway Suddenly Have Poles On Its Shopping Carts? An Analysis

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Attention Safeway shoppers. In the last week or two, you may have noticed an odd phenomenon wherein the shopping carts at some Safeway stores suddenly have a bizarre and inexplicable four-foot pole on the right side of the handle bar. The Broke-Ass discount grocery I-team got on the case, to try to answer  the question of… what’s up with that?

“It’s so people can’t take them out the door,” a Safeway associate told us. The pole is just tall enough so the shopping cart cannot fit through the front exit of the store doors, because it will knock into the top of the door, thereby preventing you from getting the shopping cart out to the parking lot.

Safeway is experiencing a phenomenon of their shopping carts disappearing. While this has always been the case in San Francisco, it has apparently increased in recent months, as Hoodline reported in July that the Church and Market Safeway has seen 160 carts stolen in the previous few weeks.

Safeway generally has pretty decent security, and those viral shoplifting videos are always from other chain stores where the security is far more lax. 

But do not believe Safeway when they cry poor. Their owner Albertsons experienced record sales and earnings growth in their most recent fiscal quarter. And as we noted in our analysis of which companies you should shoplift from, “Safeway’s parent company, Cerberus Capital Management has received $156,378,705 in government subsidies. Amongst their many holdings is the gun manufacturer Remington Arms, who has itself received $68,900,000 in subsidies. So yeah…gross.”

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Joe Kukura- Millionaire in Training

Joe Kukura- Millionaire in Training

Joe Kukura is a two-bit marketing writer who excels at the homoerotic double-entendre. He is training to run a full marathon completely drunk and high, and his work has appeared in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal on days when their editors made particularly curious decisions.


  1. August 17, 2021 at 8:48 am

    Boycott these Supermarket chains that exploit your liberties and freedoms. Toxic!

    They use facial recognition and data collecting for all kinds of reasons. While biased zealot assholes watch and review.

    Go to your local farmers market instead. Go to your local meat and fish market instead. Corporations are pollution.

  2. Joel Hurewitz
    August 18, 2021 at 3:06 pm
  3. Sick and Tired
    August 19, 2021 at 11:34 am

    But if Safeway owns the property (carts) what is wrong with them looking for ways to keep that property? Should they give the carts away for free with every purchase? Do you have a car alarm on your car? Do you lock the doors of your car or apartment? You lock it because you want to keep your stuff. Simple as that. This is some illogical writing. Trying to keep your own assets doesn’t mean you’re saying “whoa is me, I’m poor and need subsidies.” The connections made in this story are kinda lazy bruh.

  4. wont shop there
    August 19, 2021 at 1:02 pm

    If you buy enough groceries to need a cart, you should be able to take that cart to the car. If the technology that makes the cart stop at the limit lines around the lot don’t work, then do what some store used to do – insert a quarter to take a cart, and when you return it to the cart corral, the quarter pops back out. But to come up with that level of ridiculousness is – well, ridiculous.