Supermarkets, Restaurants Hire Security, Limit Hours to Combat Crime

Restaurants and grocery stores said they are revamping operations in response to crime, with some operators limiting hours, spending more on security and closing stores entirely.

Starbucks Corp. last week said that it was permanently closing 16 U.S. stores after workers reported incidents related to drug use and other disruptions, and would likely close more. Casual dining chain Noodles & Co. has encountered drug use in bathrooms in certain markets, and is training workers on how to respond, Chief Executive Dave Boennighausen said. Supermarket giant Kroger Co. last year listed organized theft among the factors pressuring its profit margins for the first time.

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