Tide theft on the rise?

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DENVER – Some call it “Liquid Gold.” And if a handful of news reports are accurate, it’s the hottest thing on the street.

The Daily, an iPad publication, reported Monday that shoplifters are making off with gallons of Tide laundry detergent from popular retail stores like Walmart and CVS.

Lt. Matt Swenke of the West St. Paul Police Department in Minnesota described laundry detergent as a “needed commodity” – much like baby formula and toilet paper – that he said is often a target for shoplifters looking to profit by reselling the items to privately-owned retail stores.

He referenced one case of a man suspected of stealing $25,000 worth of Tide detergent from a Walmart in West St. Paul over a 15-month period.

Bottles of Tide sell for $10 to $20 in retail stores and $5 to $10 on the Black Market.

“Target is aware of the issue and we are encouraging our team members to be extra vigilant in spotting unusual activity and reporting it through the proper channels,” said Target spokesperson Jill Hornbacher. “Target is committed to ensuring a safe and secure shopping and working environment for our guests and team members.”

Other retailers, however, are denying reports of a new spike in stolen Tide products.

“We are not experiencing a ‘wave’ of Tide thefts,” CVS/pharmacy public relations director Mike DeAngelis wrote in email to FoxNews.com.

Fox News contributed to this report

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