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CGCRI fighting for retail
March 2017, Retail (Industry), Associations

The Consumer Goods Council of South Africa (CGCSA) facilitates engagement between stakeholders in the industry, represents the interests of the industry to government and other regulatory bodies, and also engages in industry-sponsored output-orientated initiatives.

Dr Graham Wright.
Dr Graham Wright.

This initiative involves the active participation of the major retailers of fast moving consumer goods, clothing, jewellery and other commodities (such as furniture). It also involves shopping centre owners and management companies, as well as security service providers across the country. The benefits derived from this collaborative platform in fighting crime, is also being actively promoted to other industry segments, such as the restaurant industry as well as those companies which are not part of the current membership.

This anti-crime platform is the largest of its nature in the country and is recognised as a critical information sharing, coordinating and mobilisation capability in the national fight against crime in this critical industry sector.

The core risks addressed by the initiative include serious and violent crime, disruptions caused by civil disobedience and terrorism and related threats.

The Initiative has been operating successfully since its formation in 2002 in response to the high crime rate affecting this industry. The Consumer Goods Crime Risk Initiative (CGCRI) focuses on facilitating cooperation between all stakeholders in order to reduce crime and mitigate risk within and against the industry. Its underpinning principle is that crime against the industry is viewed as a non-competitive issue, requiring both unilateral and bilateral interventions by members of the consumer goods industry, as well as open information sharing in the spirit of industry-wide cooperation.

The CGCRI provides a platform for information sharing and cooperation across the consumer goods industry, in addition to providing a set of core services to its members. These services include the engagement with the Criminal Justice System (especially the SAPS – aimed at enhancing the engagement between the parties), crime incident information analysis and management (to understand and mitigate crime risks), pro-active crime alerts (to enhance prevention and readiness) and a portfolio of industry-specific crime prevention best practices (including an Employer Reference Site, and an ID Card service aimed at third-party service providers to the industry).

The CGCRI strives to work closely with the South African Police Service (SAPS), and other components of the CJS, as well as other business anticrime agencies, including those representing the petroleum, banking, tourism as well as the cash-in-transit fraternity. CGCRI regularly meets with the SAPS, at both national and provincial levels, and participates in some of the formal structures, such as the NATJOC/PROVJOC and other meetings to discuss crime prevention initiatives.

The retail industry is predominantly affected by armed robberies, armed night robberies, burglaries, cash-in-transit robberies and fraud. Through the Crime Risk Initiative; the CGCSA has established a mutually collaborative and successful partnership with the police, mall owners and others in the security industry. This partnership is useful in sharing information and intelligence that is used to alert and help mall owners so that they can take appropriate measures to protect property, goods and also the shopping public.

Through this initiative and liaison with the SAPS, regular crime prevention interventions are initiated, resulting in high visibility of law enforcement, with the concomitant impact on crime levels. These interventions include the Easter Campaign; Mid-year Campaign; September Holiday Campaigns and the Festive Season Campaign – all focusing on SAPS visibility, intelligence-informed operations and interventions and awareness to ensure safety for the retailers and shoppers.

The recent 2016 Festive Season Campaign, led by the SAPS as a national effort, has been reported as successful in deterring criminal activity, and providing peace-of-mind to shoppers. This campaign involved the deployment of SAPS members in and around identified hotspot Shopping Centres nationally, and which will continue throughout the year.

For further information on the initiative or membership, please contact Puleng Rachidi at 083 250 0089,

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