Is It Illegal In Montana To Eat Your Food While Still Shopping?
It's funny, this article might become outdated in just a few years as more and more people are having groceries delivered. Of course there will be times you find yourself doing your own shopping, and it made us wonder, "Is it illegal to eat or drink your food before paying for it at the store?"
You should never go shopping for your groceries while hungry, not only will you probably buy more than you want or need, you'll also probably want to eat your food right away. I know I'm guilty of opening a bag of cookies or drinking a soda while still shopping.
Am I guilty of breaking any laws though?
According to the website Find Law, yes and no. It's one of those things that when you think about it just a bit, the answer is pretty simple.
It's not illegal for to you open that bag of chips or a drink and consume it while your shopping, and then paying for it when you finish. Those items have a set price and it doesn't change if not opened, opened and half eaten, or even opened and eaten completely.
Eating half of the grapes you put in your cart does constitute shoplifting. That's because you pay for those items based on weight. If you eat them before scanning or weighing them, then yes you are technically shopping lifting.
Will I go to jail?
Honestly, if no one catches you doing it, no. You'll just have to live with your own guilt, and the understanding that the more people do this, the more costs for food will rise in prices. I think we all can agree with the price of food today, it doesn't need any help being more expensive.
So to summarize chips good, grapes bad. I wish someone told my mother than when I was a kid.