Gang Cutting Coupons
What exactly is Gang Cutting Coupons ?
In short, it means cutting large amounts of coupons together. The long version……
This issue of Gang Cutting came up MANY years ago when retailers were actually cutting multiple inserts and submitting them for products that were not actually bought by consumers. We can surely understand why this would be an issue! In 1977 manufacturers were having problems with stores gang-cutting coupons from unsold newspapers, then turning them in for reimbursement. It was so bad that one company estimated that over 108 million coupons were redeemed fraudulently annually!
In a sting operation manufacturers targeted an area in New York where gang-cutting and fraudulent coupon redemption was suspected to be a huge issue. They released a coupon for a “Fake” product called Breen Laundry Detergent. This product did not exist, so NO coupons should have been redeemed or accepted. The 25¢/1 Breen Laundry Detergent coupon was designed to catch stores that were gang-cutting inserts and submitting all of the coupons for redemption. Over 117,000 coupons for the non-existent Breen detergent were submitted for redemption from those inserts! This gave investigators information as to which stores were gang-cutting coupons. That’s almost $30,000 of coupons redeemed for a product that did not even exist! ( You can read more about this at PROMOMAGAZINE.COM)
So in short, this really was not an issue for your everyday consumer in the beginning. So what does this mean for us today? Can I not stack my inserts and cut all of them out at once to save time? Well honestly, I don’t have a definitive answer for you on that one.. I stack my inserts and cut them all out at one time. (I usually only have 4 or 5 at a time) Some websites will tell you no, you should not do this, some will tell you that it is okay. I was intrigued by this, so I spoke to a manager at my favorite store. I asked if they had problems with coupons not being reimbursed because of “gang-cutting”. His answer was NO. They had not been made aware of coupons not being reimbursed because of “gang-cutting”. I then asked, “Would they be made aware of issues like this?” He said definitely, they would be made aware of issues with coupons not reimbursed for any reason. In the past few years, I have cut multiple inserts at one time over & over & used them at this particular store. So, in my honest opinion, after my discussion with this manager, I believe as long as you do not cut loads of inserts or use tons of the same coupon in one shopping trip you should be okay.