An unusual theft took place at the "Flieten Franz" snack bar in Trier, after burglars stole barrels containing 600 litres of used cooking fat earlier this week.

The "Trierischer Volksfreund" outlet published a report of the incident on Wednesday morning.

Although one might be inclined to think that frying fat has little value, prices have actually soared from 10 cents per litre to 80-90 cents in recent months, meaning that the stolen oil could fetch around €540 in converted values. Old frying fat can be used, among other things, for the production of biodiesel and machine grease, or in cosmetics.

According to the Trier newspaper, the snack bar's proprietor noticed the theft taking place on CCTV, but didn't think anything of it at the time, believing the oil was being collected by the usual company. It wasn't until he contacted the business about it that he even realised anything was amiss.

The theft was no surprise to the company, as the frying fat thieves were well known for their exploits. In order to conduct their criminal activities, the so-called "chip-fat mafia" wear high-visibility vests bearing the words "Fett", and load the stolen barrels into a silver lorry with French number plates.

The snack bar owner has since filed a complaint with the police.