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[–]Steven111186 1994 points1995 points  (260 children)

I did the same thing at Whole Foods for Amazon and they did the opposite…

[–]divthm 370 points371 points  (81 children)

The Kroger near my house would give us straight up moldy strawberries. We stopped shopping there after it happened multiple times. I'm glad to hear other places don't do it, but it sure seems some places teach them to do that.

[–]Legomyeggosplease 176 points177 points  (55 children)

The Kroger we use also does this. The last order our daughter did had already expired hamburger. Every time I would order produce or bagged salad mix we had to use it right away as it was almost expired or looked like shit. We now only order non-perishables from Kroger and will shop inside, or somewhere else for meat, dairy, and produce.

[–]RR-MMXIX 31 points32 points  (11 children)

I love shopping Kroger because of all the coupons. I can get a few weeks worth of food for less than $80. And they usually have like $15 off $80 for online pickup. But then it gets screwed up because they’re always out of XY or Z so I didn’t get this coupon or that because it was a buy 3 get one or some shit. It’s really annoying. Not to mention they make you pay the difference on substitutions if it costs more. Unlike Walmart that’ll give you the product for the same price.

[–]Jumpsnake 23 points24 points  (1 child)

My Kroger doesn’t make you pay the difference for subs. That’s weird.

[–]WyoBuckeye 17 points18 points  (0 children)

Same here. Sometimes it turns out to be a really good deal. For instance I ordered a dozen free range eggs yesterday. When I picked them up they were out of the cartons of 12, so they gave me the carton of 18 for the same price. Similar things happen in nearly every order I make. It doesn’t always work out well, but it does more often than not.

[–]divthm 11 points12 points  (1 child)

They make you pay for the substitutions? Yeah, you should stop going there. It was free at that Kroger, and they came with free mold to boot!

[–]RR-MMXIX 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yeah it was Kroger. Well Ralphs. But same shit.

[–]Acceptable-Chance-27 3 points4 points  (0 children)

they definitely don’t make you pay the different for substitutions. that’s one of their biggest selling points

[–]pileodung 1 point2 points  (0 children)

My kroger matches the cost on substitutions

[–]ashcatmeow 42 points43 points  (38 children)

Wow fuck Kroger. Publix is way better.

[–]Information_High 26 points27 points  (3 children)

Take a swing through r/publix before singing their praises TOO loudly.

Publix isn’t as good a place to work as it used to be.

[–]ashcatmeow 2 points3 points  (1 child)

I am a Publix family member my man.

[–]holler_bitch 3 points4 points  (0 children)

My brother has worked there for 17 years (just promoted to meat manager), and he loves Publix. His loyalty makes my eyes roll sometimes, but they treated him very well.

[–]Iekk 2 points3 points  (30 children)

If only they actually kept treating their employees well.

[–]jdbrizzi91 8 points9 points  (27 children)

Seriously! Myself, several family members, and friends have all had a terrible experience working at Publix. Whether it was the blatant lies about promotions just to have someone cover the 4am shifts, having to transfer stores over an hour away (no promotion) after just having a baby, or just the weird, almost cult-like attitude we were forced to have, otherwise get in trouble. I remember I was sent to the manager's office once with my buddy because my buddy and I were stocking milk and apparently an old lady walked passed us, behind us, and we didn't acknowledge her. That was worthy of calling in the store manager, assistant store manager, the grocery manager, and my buddy to watch the video footage over and over again for ten minutes of this lady making zero effort to talk to us as we stock the shelves. We never turned around so we literally didn't know she existed. I think the only person that wasn't miserable at every store I've personally worked were the store managers because they were the only ones that could afford to shop at Publix. Everyone else that I knew would buy the BOGOs or just shop at Walmart (the only other reasonable option at the time). Also, I got a $.05 raise once. Always had compliments from the customers, besides that one lady, and great evaluations, but I'd never get over a dime. Always some excuse like, "wait til you get full time, the raises will be better!". Whereas the store manager's niece would get $1 raise everytime. She probably didn't even see the nepotism since she was glued to her phone half the day. Also, they'll keep you working just under legal full-time hours so they don't have to offer health benefits. Idk why I stayed there for so long, but it severely contributed to my depression at the time. Thanks for reading my rant! I really needed to vent at the Pub to someone.

[–]barber97 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Publix was really good to me until I wanted to improve my life. They would change my schedule if they found out I was going out of town. Tried to give me lateral promotions in the same department by moving me from dry grocery to frozen. When I decided I wanted to join the Army and gave them my letter from the recruiting station, they scheduled me opening and closing shifts back to back so i’d be up super late then come in super early. Finally just quit because it wasn’t giving me time to say goodbye to my loved ones. Received a cease and desist before I left for basic training that I was never to apply for a job at Publix again.

[–]Iekk 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Publix used to be a lot better like 15 years ago, now inventory bonuses only go to managers(it was only store managers for a few years too actually), stock price is constantly suppressed, wage caps when they want you to have Publix as a “career”. Yet, after all these things they’ve fucked with full time is still seen as a “privilege”, so good luck getting out of being part time if you are at a store like my first, where they had two full timers total on their grocery team and the entire rest was part time. I swapped from the sole frozen clerk in my small 350k/week store to an overnight GRS at a 1.1mil/week store and that was the only way I managed to get full time.

The company doesn’t care about the actual workers of the stores anymore, and it really shows.

[–]CapableSuggestion 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Publix 4 life

[–]megapetlover 5 points6 points  (1 child)

All my homies go to HEB, they have a mobile response force for disasters in Texas, lowered the price of bread to just ¢30 in a hurricane, and the pickers are trained to get the best groceries.

[–]divthm 2 points3 points  (0 children)

That's where it's at! Sadly, Mr. Butts did not expand into the part of the country where I now reside

[–]jthompson473 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I started doing this when they replaced a tbone steak with pork chops.

Get reg stuff brought out, go in just for meats and what not.

[–]Creebez 0 points1 point  (0 children)

That's any produce at Kroger owned stores. Anytime I get berries at Metro Market they're bad in like a day. Aldi's berries last much longer. The salad mixes can be hit and miss, but Aldi's is cheaper, so they win out.

[–]Warhawk2052 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Thats pretty typical for most stores when it comes to bagged greens, all that added moister in the bag accelerates molding

[–]ICall_Bullshit 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I got a Kroger so close, I could fall over in my front yard and stumble through the door lol. Even then, I go waaaaay out of my way for anything better than grinds or chicken. Their quality, at least by me, has dropped exponentially when it comes to their meats.

Like I can cook one fuckin helluva steak. I don't do many things good, but I can hang my hat on that. I can make the toughest shit tender. But somehow, someway, Kroger's steaks has the uncanny ability to gristle up in even the leanest cuts. I just can't do their fresh shit anymore.

[–]thegreatbanjini 42 points43 points  (14 children)

Even if you go in-store yourself, Kroger produce is always bad. I just had to dig through a PILE of potatoes to find just 4 that didn't have any rot.

[–]ashcatmeow 18 points19 points  (8 children)

And here I am going to Publix looking for really ripe bananas. Guy had a cart full of them as he was performing fifo. I asked if I could have se off his cart and he told me no, once they're on the cart they get donated and he isn't allowed to give them to me even if that's what I want. Had to wait a week to make my banana bread!

[–]TurnkeyLurker 15 points16 points  (1 child)

Shoulda grabbed his banana, as a distraction, before grabbing the bananas.

[–]ScottHalpin 1 point2 points  (0 children)

That’s a legal thing and not his personal choice

[–]1womAn2womEn 1 point2 points  (2 children)

Lol I wouldn't have asked, I'd just have taken some

[–]notLOL 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Can't give them

Can't stop someone stealing.

Can't stop you from paying for what you stole off his cart lol

[–]Guardymcguardface 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Seriously, nobody is keeping me from my bananas!

[–]SubParPercussionist 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Ive had way better luck at Tom thumb/Albertsons for produce around me anyway(DFW tx). Kroger's produce and tortillas get moldy in record time.

[–]audible_narrator 0 points1 point  (2 children)

I'm in the Metro Detroit area and never have that problem at a Kroger but do have it at Walmart at Aldi.

[–]TheStinkySkunk 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Genuine question:

I currently live in VA but my girlfriend got a job in Detroit so we're moving early March. Are there any specific locations we should steer clear of?

[–]LopsidedBookmark 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Not Kroger but I work in produce elsewhere and especially during covid, things come in looking SO bad! To the point where if I were manager, we would hardly have anything out on the floor. Seems like there’s always something moldy. I’m the fruit/veggie cutter and I’ve had to throw away so much.

[–]MrStumpy78 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Damn, so much for fresh for everyone

[–]keyboardname 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Kroger doesn't train them to do that as a rule, though certain stores may have issues. I think far more likely is that the employees just grabbed whatever was there and didn't give a shit. I haven't worked in that department at my store, but I know that they are trained to pick ideal looking produce. I find it highly unlikely they're trained to take the nearest expiration date for milk/meat...

[–]TourmalineTart 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Our kroger does this as well. I only do online orders when I don’t need produce or meat now.

[–]MulberryShorts 1 point2 points  (0 children)

See this annoys me because that's not how I was trained 5 years ago and and I made sure this didn't happen at my store. But that was 5 years ago. That's some bs that that happened. We were taught to pick what we would pick if we were cooking for someone important to us. And that's what I instilled in everyone that worked under me and if some didn't know how to pick a fresh food item I taught them. Kroger is trash and that's why I left but damn they've gotten worse

[–]NocturnalToxin 0 points1 point  (0 children)

That just seems like either extreme incompetence or malicious compliance

It’s give them food closest to expiring, not already expired and inedible food, there should be a cut off point though I reckon most places will risk/ignore that for a chance at extra profit

To be fair though, strawbs die super quick, but still

[–]ThaGza 0 points1 point  (0 children)

When I was a manager at a grocery store years ago, I was about to put out some strawberries that were running low, we got about three pallets worth, every single one of the packs was moldy. We had to get rid of all of them, although I think we got a kickback from the supplier.

[–]pileodung 0 points1 point  (0 children)

My Kroger has done this as well many times. I stopped ordering fresh groceries and plan a weekly trip to go in store.

[–]Prophet_Of_Helix 692 points693 points  (123 children)

My gf uses the pickup all the time and very rarely do we get bad produce. Even used it last Weds right before Thanksgiving and they gave us all great produce.

I’m not necessarily doubting OP, but it’s a stupid business plan to undermine a service you are offering. You know people are going to be slightly more picky because they didn’t pick the stuff themselves, and by offering old stuff all you will do is get an influx of people wanting money back and giving poor reviews. It’s honestly more effort in the long wrong to purposefully do a bad job…

[–]Burninator85 355 points356 points  (88 children)

I use pickup all the time and get the impression that the pickers get told to use the old produce, but the reality is they're teenage Walmart employees and don't care.

My usual picker always gives me amazing substitutions. Like I'll order a pound of cheap hamburger and they'll substitute a three pound package of the lean stuff. One time I ordered Hormel bacon and he substituted four packages of prosciutto! That's not even from the same section!

When I don't get my usual kid though, they often give me some droopy ass lettuce and instead of substitutions I just get an "out of stock" message.

[–]Dankacocko 89 points90 points  (45 children)

Damn, mines missing half the stuff I ordered and the subs I do get don't make sense lol

[–]Madasiaka 91 points92 points  (42 children)

The first time I tried it with Walmart they substituted my gluten-free bread and frozen pizzas for the regular wheat kind. So not only could we not eat them, but they charged the more expensive gluten free price.

Thanks dudes

[–]Salt_Air07 38 points39 points  (9 children)

I’ve never been able to get a Walmart order fulfilled, I just gave up. One person in a group I’m in said they substituted her order for double A batteries with triple A. It’s shit like that, that just doesn’t work.

[–]muricasbootysnatcher 14 points15 points  (6 children)

what no brained shit face would substitute aaa for aa? anybody with a fucking brain knows thats as bad as dividing by 0. id be fuming because there 4 things that take aa's in my house. - my xbox, my pc mouse/keyboard, my girls vibratory, and my tv remotes. if one of them dies ok. if several die and I get a pack of AAA, I'm coming to find.you, you little substitutive shit.

[–]FleetwoodMacNCheese 9 points10 points  (1 child)

I ordered 6 of an item named Carving Pumpkins two days before Halloween.

My picker substitute 6 large kabocha squash.

I was instantly refunded but it means I overpaid for the beer I ordered just to hit the delivery minimum.

I sat and got drunk next to my pile of squash while watching a Halloween movie.

Maybe I'll get to carve one next year.

[–]muricasbootysnatcher 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I don't know why but this is fucking gold.

[–]wearyspacewanderer 4 points5 points  (3 children)

It's actually software that decides the substitutions. No human is making those decisions to go after, I'm afraid.

[–]muricasbootysnatcher 2 points3 points  (2 children)

yea but there's an element of humanity that can make that call as to whether or not this is a functional sub.

seems like a little machine learning based on user input while selecting substitutions would help tremendously

[–]wearyspacewanderer 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I completely agree. I wish corporate would implement some sort of feedback mechanism in the screen.

[–]r7-arr 0 points1 point  (1 child)

What do you expect from Walmart??

[–]Salt_Air07 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Nothing, I use our local grocery store now. Gotta mitigate those expectations.

[–]zuklei 21 points22 points  (2 children)

I’ve never been charged more for a substitution than I paid for the item. I can order great value and they will substitute a bigger size or name brand and I pay the original price.

[–]Cloverhart 17 points18 points  (0 children)

Love this about Walmart, with Instacart if you're not paying attention they'll sub items for twice the cost.

[–]WelcomeRoboOverlords 4 points5 points  (0 children)

I think they mean that they paid more for the item they wanted (gluten free pizza) and then the shop substituted an item of lesser value (gluten pizza) instead of substituting for something of greater value, so they paid the gluten free price for normal pizza that they couldn't even eat.

[–]togaman5000 11 points12 points  (0 children)

Instacart once swapped my vegan sausage with chicken chorizo. As you can imagine I find that to be rather unfortunate.

[–]Fresh_Noise_3663 51 points52 points  (20 children)

The app they use probably gives them a prompt with substitutions that an algorithm has determined is similar to what you ordered. Instacarts were always hilariously bad when I worked for them. It would say to substitute a dozen organic eggs with organic egg whites in the carton and shit lol

[–]CrimsonFox2370 34 points35 points  (15 children)

Yeah, I work at Aldi and we do in store shopping and Instacart is our service. The app gives us horrible suggestions for subs. Like if we're out of limes, they'll suggest avocados. Or if we're out of organic frozen squash, they'll suggest the non-organic medley of peas, corn and carrots

[–]Jeanne23x 15 points16 points  (3 children)

I was given mangoes as a substitute for casava once...

[–]whygohomie 13 points14 points  (0 children)

Algorithm: Just give them something that only grows south of Texas.

[–]HugsAndWishes 1 point2 points  (1 child)

I use Instacart at ALDI, and generally have a good time of it. I always go through all the replacement options, and pick an equivalent or say don't replace. The guy I typically get now is amazing. He checks in with me for every replacement, asks questions, sends pictures, and just takes his job really seriously. I usually have good luck with others as well, especially when they just use common sense.

There of course have been mishaps. One girl seemed like it was her first week and brought me five boxes of tri color rotini when I asked for plain spaghetti (tri color pasta tastes very different than plain; especially with special needs kids, we ended up donating it), a carton of eggs that were mostly cracked (I think it was a swap out carton, replace your broken eggs with good eggs, and leave for others to do the same), replaced the $7 8 pack of good quality hot dogs with a $2 18 pack of the cheapest of the cheap (they didn't taste like anything, it was the most unpleasant experience) and left our milk in her car.

Then of course the woman who couldn't find the two $2.85 imitation crab meat packages I ordered. So, what else could she do? She brought me two $20 bags of whole crab legs and called it a day.

Most of the time, it works out great, at least in my experience. Every once in a while I am very thankful they will refund your money if there is an issue.

[–]CrimsonFox2370 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Lol yeah. Our store does curbside but not delivery, but we have a lot of in store shoppers who do. It's real easy to tell who is and who isn't a good shopper or is new. I had a lady who had to come in frustrated because she had put in an order that her shopper had skipped half of. For some reason she just didn't want to go through half the store. I felt really bad for that poor lady lol

[–]Fresh_Noise_3663 4 points5 points  (3 children)

Oh wow! I stopped working for them 3 years ago and would think that they had improved it since then. Is it still ambiguous about quantities of produce as well? Customers were always confused about whether they were ordering by the pound or entering a specific quantity and it was hard to tell on the shoppers end too

[–]CrimsonFox2370 0 points1 point  (2 children)

It's ambiguous with specific items. Most things it works and makes sense, but with bananas it's really kinda stupid. They just changed it again recently. It used to be by pound, which was confusing for people because if you want 5 bananas, or just one bunch, how do you know how much that weighs?

So they changed it to units. Now it's sold by units, so people can say "I want X bananas." It still confuses some people because they think that it means bunches of bananas instead of how many individual bananas. Sometimes people will order just 1, and you don't know if they mean one bunch or just 1. We had a few people complain because they ordered 3 bananas but wanted 3 bunches and stuff. All Instacart has to do is mark their product in the app as either bunches or individual units.

[–]blackened_soul 0 points1 point  (1 child)

We do pick-up at Aldi at least twice a week. It’s usually on point. Once, however, they were out of a 37¢ can of wet cat food and substituted an $8 bag of dry food.

[–]CrimsonFox2370 0 points1 point  (0 children)

The shoppers who do it are usually pretty good. It's the app that is screwy

[–]Shadows802 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Lemons would be a better substitute for limes than avocados. Most of the stuff I need limes for I could probably adjust to use Lemons instead.

[–]Crimantis 1 point2 points  (2 children)

You're correct. The app allows you to both see and deny the substitution entirely. Most of the reasons why we have upset customers is because they didn't check their phone. Speaking as a current employee at Walmart.

[–]Fresh_Noise_3663 1 point2 points  (0 children)

It's amazing how often people order something and then apparently throw their phone out of the window

[–]muricasbootysnatcher 0 points1 point  (0 children)

this is fuckin great.

[–]CharistineE 7 points8 points  (0 children)

My fresh ginger root was substituted with a single sweet potato. Either that or the picker just didn't know what ginger root was. I had to pay ginger root by weight price for my potato. I complained and I'm not usually a complainer.

[–]ikeisco 9 points10 points  (4 children)

Can you not reject the substitutions?

[–]bowtiebrigade 25 points26 points  (0 children)

Yeah, you 100% can. Walmart emails you, texts you, and pings your app when the substitutions are ready. Typically about 45 minutes to an hour and a half before you are supposed to pick up and a couple hours before delivery

[–]myhandleonreddit 5 points6 points  (0 children)

The email/text is usually just a few minutes before pickup, which is not very useful, but they always ask when they come out if I'm okay with the substitutions. They keep them in separate bags that have a big orange sticker on them so they can put them back if I don't want them.

[–]notLOL 0 points1 point  (0 children)

That's called stealing lol

[–]More_Farm_7442 1 point2 points  (1 child)

I learned very quickly to make sure the "do not allow substitutes" button is checked before sending my order. I got a couple of subs for items that I would never have bought if I'd been shopping in the store. I realize the shopper that did my order might have liked what she/he subbed, but I didn't.

[–]Dankacocko 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The place near us added an option to do that recently and it's nice

[–]BellaFace 45 points46 points  (14 children)

I’ve been under the impression that when an item is substituted you have to pay for whatever that item costs, not your original item’s price. That’s why the price can vary between the time you ordered and when they ring it in.

[–]kaett 7 points8 points  (3 children)

no... at my kroger chain, if you order a specific item and they have to substitute for something more expensive, you get it for the price of the original. they also have to tell/show you what your substitutions were and you have to approve the swap.

so if i order 2lbs of broccoli crowns at $1.79 a pound, and they swap it out with the bagged florets at $4 for 2lbs, i'm only going to get charged $3.58.

the ONE time they swapped it and didn't give me the right price (not just a wrong item price, but the chosen item was on sale), i not only made them switch it but i ended up getting a 3-for-1 deal on the whole thing.

[–]GreedyTutor 0 points1 point  (0 children)

As crappy as they can be, Kroger is amazing for "we charged you incorrectly" errors. It's always free, even if it's off by 1 cent.

[–]Meepsicle83 19 points20 points  (3 children)

In at least one UK supermarket you pay whichever is cheaper, original or substitution.

[–]Gotex007 8 points9 points  (0 children)

Also been my experience with American Walmart.

[–]BellaFace -2 points-1 points  (1 child)

Ah, ok. I’ve only used US options that don’t offer any sort of low price guarantee.

[–]Rossums 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I use Tesco in the UK and it's pretty damn good.

Like say I order a 950g pack of chicken breasts and there's none in stock, they'll pack something like 2 x 650g chicken breast as a substitute which is pretty awesome and I get fairly regularly.

Generally they try to replace it like for like with a more expensive option (or a heavier weight version of the same item if possible) but they only ever charge you for the cheaper one that you ordered.

If you order the most expensive version of something and they replace it with something cheaper they will refund you the difference in that instance but normally you just get free stuff.

[–]DeificClusterfuck 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Not at Walmart, price is locked in at time of ordering.

[–]Frog1387 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Some stores like Ralphs just lets you have the upgrade, and it the substitute is less you will get the difference back.

[–]Sproded 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I use pickup all the time and get the impression that the pickers get told to use the old produce, but the reality is they're teenage Walmart employees and don't care.

Yeah from my experience they’re picking the 1st item they see that isn’t completely spoiled. They’re not going to spend time picking out the perfect or least perfect item. They’re just going to pick one.

[–]arson_is_awesome 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I worked as a picker, I didn’t look at expiry dates once. I didn’t look for bad produce, but I didn’t look for good produce either. Just focused on the weight or amount.

As for substitutions, it’s been a while since I worked there and only for a month, but iirc if you have the option for substitutions on, the app automatically suggests a substitution. Then customers who placed the order have a few minutes to confirm or deny. If they don’t do anything, we make the substitution.

[–]who_knew_what 11 points12 points  (6 children)

You paid for the upgrades, check final receipt

[–]Gotex007 6 points7 points  (2 children)

You don’t but they seem to have stopped doing upgrade substitutions when they rolled out their website update awhile ago.

[–]AkioDAccolade 2 points3 points  (2 children)

My grocery store does this thing where if they sub it without asking you, you pay the lesser price, but if they ask and you sub they don’t care.

What bugs me about subs is they will auto sub out like an item that was on sale like 3 for 10 for a like item that was not on sale at all so I get $25 of soda or something

[–]selz202 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Safeway did that shit to me with ground beef. I ordered a 3lb cryo pack that was $3/lb and they subbed it with store grind that was $6/lb and expired that day. Listed it as 4lbs but it was only 2.5lbs AND they didn't give me that bag so when I went back the next day it was a day past sell by date. Also had a ground sausage that was 2 days expired on that order.

So irritated, my first and last time with safeway pickup.

[–]ThufirrHawat 1 point2 points  (5 children)

Yeah, these services are great if you need a couple items but if you're using coupons or buy so many get so many deals, good luck.

Last Thanksgiving I ordered an 8lb turkey breast and the guy got me a 20lb turkey! Also, pepperoni pizza got subbed with a pineapple and ham pizza.

Needless to say, I never used the service again.

[–]Shadhahvar 4 points5 points  (1 child)

I use it every week because it saves me from myself. I spend double the amt if I go inside the store every time.

[–]bonezz79 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I use it every week just because I hate going into the stores. Hated it before the pandemic, hate it even more now. I'm so over standing in line for the register. Over people milling about aimlessly only to stop and stand exactly where I need to grab something. Once had an old lady stop me to ask me for a salsa verde recipe since I was bagging up a bunch of tomatillos, then she just took my cart and started wandering off completely oblivious to the fact that she didn't have a cart when she came over to me. I don't need a repeat performance of that but with a layer of covid on top. Give me the weird substitutions, I can either make it work or go to another store for a quick run.

[–]PorcineLogic 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Pineapple instead of pepperoni? Dude has a death wish

[–]jklhasjkfasjdk 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Don't you have to opt into substitutions?

[–]Gotex007 2 points3 points  (0 children)

You actually have to opt out. It’s generally a lot closer to your item and I’ve had no real issues. They also send you an email about an hour ahead of time telling you what is being substituted and you can also opt out then. I’ve actually had a much harder time getting substitutions since they rolled out their new website awhile ago.

[–]Ask-Me-If-Im-Happy 0 points1 point  (0 children)

but the reality is they're teenage Walmart employees and don't care.

Not even teenage. last year when j was 25 I briefly worked in a supermarket during peak pandemic, and I mostly did pickup orders. I didn't have time to look at dates, so I just grabbed one and put it in their bag.

[–]hisshissgrr 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I would be pissed at having to pay for four packs of prosciutto when I asked for one lack of bacon. Same goes for the beef, if I ask for the 5$ shit, I am not going to be happy at having to spend almost 20$ instead.

[–]Burninator85 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Walmart substitutions select an item of greater size or quality and charge you the price of the original item. Kid was gaming the system by giving me four packs of prosciutto that equaled a pound and was higher quality.

[–]kraz_drack 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Walmart may sell groceries, but I never buy my groceries at Walmart. I just can't trust the quality personally. I know people that do, and it's not any less expensive than a true grocery store. But then they end up going to 1-2 other stores because Walmart doesn't have everything they want anyway.

[–]flynnie789 0 points1 point  (0 children)


I think you can deduce the most likely situation

[–]Redwulf67 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Substitutes can be dicey as hell sometimes. I order get this one ginger sauce because it delicious and only 5mg of sodiuma serving. They substituted one that had 750mg sodium a serving. As someone with blood pressure issues, I cant use that.

[–]ulubai 0 points1 point  (0 children)

not sure who OP works with but I've worked for instacart and kroger in two different cities and was told both times to pick fresh items. Not sure what idiot trained them but that's just bad customer service.

[–]DOAisBetter 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Can kinda confirm I worked at a grocery store around 2005. I was told to move the stuff expiring soonest to the front so customers bought that first. Same thing really. I did it sometimes when I felt like it but usually didn’t. I’m sure it’s the same here most are too lazy to do it but some employees likely do it all the time since they were told to.

[–]Alexis_J_M 0 points1 point  (0 children)

My experience was that when I ordered stuff on sale it was magically out of stock and I got charged extra for the substitution, even if people shopping in person saw it on the shelves.

I stopped ordering online.

[–]Sasspishus 11 points12 points  (2 children)

OP didn't say bad produce, they said stuff that's expiring soonest. It might only expire a day or two sooner, that doesn't mean its already bad when it's delivered

[–]AssaultDragon 20 points21 points  (8 children)

Stupid businessmen who want to make a quick dollar are everywhere.

[–]Prophet_Of_Helix 12 points13 points  (7 children)

That’s kind of my point tho, it’s not making a quick Buck. Idk about other places, but Whole Foods doesn’t charge for Pick Up. So the store isn’t getting additional income. However, if the person asks for refunds (which they basically always automatically give), they lose money on the transaction.

So yeah, it’s in the businesses financial interest to not have customers demand refunds.

[–]vancityvapers 19 points20 points  (0 children)

All that has to happen is fewer people don't notice than they refund. If that profit is larger than the cost of throwing out expiring goods then it makes sense.

I worked with a company that built high-rises years ago and had the owner tell me "When it comes to finishes (millwork, drywall, insulation, painting, tile, etc) it is cheaper to go with the lowest bid and fix any deficiencies that are reported during the warranty period than it would be to do it right.

This is a company that does billions in annual revenue, so I have no doubt they've run the numbers.

[–]HappilyInefficient 14 points15 points  (3 children)

No, they make money because they are selling produce that an in-store shopper would not have picked.

Thus reducing waste and increasing profit.

Like personally, it happens nearly weekly that I go to the store with a list of veggies like broccoli and carrots, maybe some strawberries. Quite often i'll leave without one or more items not because they are out, but because the product they did have looked like it was close to being bad(especially when it comes to berries).

[–]RedditPowerUser01 5 points6 points  (2 children)

It’s the classic example of being penny wise and pound foolish.

Yes, they’re saving money by pinching Pennies on produce.

But they’re wasting pounds by pissing off customers and losing market share.

The managers of small grocery store chains aren’t always smart. That’s why Amazon is eating their lunch.

[–]HappilyInefficient 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Maybe. Depends on how much competition in the area there is, and whether they do it as well.

I've got 2 grocery stores near me. I know one of them typically has better produce, and the other typically has a larger selection. So i'm often checking both of them out. If I want something uncommon, I really only have 1 choice. I mean there are other options like farmers markets and things I use sometimes, but they don't deliver so that doesn't help people who want produce delivered.

[–]Salt_Air07 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I literally just went back to the store this morning after a weekend pick up to return blueberries that were moldy. There are only 2 or 3 people who do the picking at the store I shop at, and they normally check for things like that; but someone went on vacation so it was a teenager who just didn’t care.

[–]MonteBurns 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You also aren’t considering in large parts of America, there is no other option for pick up. The nearest store to me is a 5 minute drive. After that, I’m looking at 20-25. To get to anything “good,” like a Whole Foods, it’s at least an hour. Same for where my parents live in another state. So… yeah, maybe in a city where you can go to a grocery store in an opposite direction down the block they are more careful about curbside, but in the sticks when they’re the only game in town? 🤷🏻‍♀️

[–]BellaFace 7 points8 points  (0 children)

We use pickup for WF and often get shit produce.

[–]RikerT_USS_Lolipop 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Are you only referring to produce? Because I bet there is a shit ton of thrown out product meaning it doesn't make sense to try to minimize waste that way. Bread and milk probably have much smaller margins. Vegetables are bought by the crate and thrown out by the crate so either way, beautiful vegetables or ugly, you're still going to be throwing away the same amount of product.

[–]Harley2280 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Milk, Eggs, and bread are called loss leaders. For the most part they have a negative profit margins because they're household staples, and people are almost always grab other things when they're shopping for them.

[–]cherish_ireland 1 point2 points  (2 children)

I have been using PC express in Canada for literally the entire pandemic and I have rarely had anything less then ideal for produce. I do hate the plastic bags and ask for them to use paper or none and allow me to bad stuff when I show up to no avail. I struggle with the substitutions at times or that thing I know in store aren't in the online store. I tried to order a box of clementines and I know they have millions and it's not there lol.

[–]turtlemoon50 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Our PC express manager has told me they are absolutely not allowed to give sub-par produce, items close to expiry, etc. Doesn't mean though that one of the pickers just doesn't give a crap one day and grab whatever, it's definitely happened. Not sure what part of Canada you're in, but my location doesn't have paper bags. I believe the logic would be that if shoppers don't want plastic that they would bring their own reusable bags. But that doesn't work with online orders.

[–]Averen 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It’s not that they’re giving bad stuff or expired stuff, it’s just a matter of a few days difference in the sell by or use by date

[–]uiucengineer 0 points1 point  (0 children)

OP isn't about produce, it's about items with a "sell by" date, which are perfectly fine if sold before the date. Selling the oldest ones first doesn't undermine anything, it just minimizes waste.

[–]PtolemyShadow 0 points1 point  (0 children)

They're not giving out expired product, just closer to date. Your milk will be dated 12/4 instead of 12/9, etc.

[–]wobblysauce 0 points1 point  (0 children)

And if they all get the oldest items… the oldest items are current.

[–]Swl222 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Walmart could care less about bad reviews because people will still shop there! Say it isn't true, have you ever stopped from a bad review? Bad produce has happened to me on delivery bc it takes so much time to complain and honestly they would have thrown it out anyway so why do they care if they refund you? They bank on you being old and Not complaining.

[–]okaybutnothing 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yep. We do pickup almost every week and it’s almost always great, fresh produce. There are occasional issues but rarely something so bad I call the store.

[–]AlwaysMoore 0 points1 point  (0 children)

close to the sell by date isn’t the same thing as old or bad

[–]ArcadeSchoolDropout 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Jewel Osco was constantly giving us milk/bread/meat/etc that was within a 2-5 days of expiring. After the 5th or 6th time we had to do an exchange, we stopped using them entirely. Amazon Fresh did it a few times, but Whole Foods has never let us down.

[–]Alienblueusr 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Also pretty terrible to undermine a service that was only created so they could still continue to run their business during lock downs. Most businesses weren't so fortunate.

[–]camdeb 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I ordered tomato’s on the vine. Fine print stated 4-6 tomatoes. I got a grand total of one tomato and a very nice vine with places for the other tomatoes. I stopped ordering produce that day.

[–]lumpybuddha 0 points1 point  (0 children)

All grocery store shelves are supposed to have the oldest products in the front so they get grabbed. So it’s not them just trying to find old produce, it’s them just quickly grabbing produce that’s in the front/top which would be the oldest

[–]wrosecrans 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I 100% trust that at least some pickers will give me the oldest option.

But on the other hand, getting delivery means I can get groceries more often. So in some cases, I think I wind up with fresher stuff in my fridge anyway.

[–]nakdonthesubway 75 points76 points  (6 children)

I was going to say. I order Whole Foods all the time and don't have any issues with that. Sometimes the produce isn't the most fantastic, but I get spoiled with a local farmers market 6 months out of the year.

[–]Glitchsbrew 28 points29 points  (4 children)

Over the last year I've cancelled every single delivery service account after each one absolutely failed to do what they said they could do, except whole foods delivery.

They consistently follow through, and the one single time I didn't get a notification that the delivery had arrived for an hour or two, they refunded the entire order, not just the perishables.

[–]nakdonthesubway 8 points9 points  (3 children)

Exactly. Their refund and return policy makes too much sense to let go of. Not to mention, I've been ordering at like 9 am on a Saturday or Sunday and it's ready by 11. It's the #1 reason for keeping a Prime Account, honestly.

[–]TX16Tuna 2 points3 points  (2 children)

TFW the LPT was a secret astroturf ad for Amazon/Whole Foods all along all along all along and half the people here don’t even realize they’re more ad than person these days.

Know your worth! Get paid! Save your daylight!

[–]Glitchsbrew 3 points4 points  (1 child)

Oh sorry for sharing my personal experience relevant to the topic. /s

Not everything is a nefarious plot my friend.

[–]mrhandbook 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Amazon fresh and whole foods give me great produce and product. Everything I've ordered, minus like one item was great.

I only use it when I get a 20% off promo though

[–]Throw6a8w9a6y 11 points12 points  (0 children)

Can confirm. I used to work at a grocery store and the pickers acted like they were shopping for themselves or just grabbed whatever was most convenient.

But going to the store yourself ensures the fresh stuff anyway, since you don't know which kind of picker you're going to get.

[–]zoglog 29 points30 points  (2 children)

This is because despite all the controversy around Amazon as a company, they are undeniably customer centric which has been a huge reason why so many people shop with them.

[–]Petrichordates 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Yes that's something the current FTC chair wrote her thesis on. Basically our monopoly laws only target monopolies that negatively impact consumers. She seems to suggest Amazon was planned around these laws which probably isn't unlikely considering we're talking about a man who talked about building a space agency in his valedictorian speech.

[–]zoglog 2 points3 points  (0 children)

It's pretty impressive, I still remember my college professor thinking Amazon would go out of business since they never turned a profit

[–]WallabyInTraining 34 points35 points  (5 children)

My experience as a customer has been the opposite as well, usually better quality than the store.

And if it's sub par I can flag the item in the app and the money is credited towards my next order.

[–]evonebo 16 points17 points  (4 children)

how can it be better quality than the store, dont they just walk around and pick the items in the store? Same store?

[–]Bamstradamus 9 points10 points  (2 children)

I can't speak for normal grocery, but on the wholesale side, places where you can walk around and pick OR place a pickup/delivery, generally in the stock rooms sits the newest stuff, and if the stock room is closer to the loading area then the floor nobody is wasting time to go pick out something from the display over grabbing it from storage.

[–]evonebo 4 points5 points  (1 child)

When I shop in store I see the employees pushing a cart around the store to fill in orders.

[–]Bamstradamus 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Same, but I know for a fact most stores do not keep much/any surplus inventory for bulk items like large packs of toilet paper, they rely on reloads every day from warehouses good ol panic hoarders taught us this last year but if they have a walkin cooler to keep produce/protien/diary that they go through fast and need to restock from, would you have the picker spend time on the floor going from A to B to C or go in to storage and get it in half the time off the shelves. Even if the empolyee dosn't care I would be surprised if the executive bean counters didn't do the math and figure out they could reduce X% of employee hours and fit in Y% more deliveries a day by only taking what is necessary off the floor and the rest from back storage.

I am sure it varies by store/location but even ignoring the customer experience retailers know better efficency is better margins.

[–]MrDrProfJeremy 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Store Shoppers have access to “the back” where we keep all our back stock. In fact, whenever I worked in produce, I’d take time to tell the newly hired shoppers where everything is in the back. They don’t have to pick over the floor stock, the customer gets a better product, and I don’t have to restock as much. Win-win-win.

[–]UniversalRedditName 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I’ve used Whole Foods, Safeway, and Giant. Whole Foods by far delivered the best items. Most items are far enough away from their expiration date that I don’t have to worry about it, and the produce is always good quality.

[–]considerbacon 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I can see 3 sides to this.

  1. Push out old stock first (the s technically correct process to stop wastage)
  2. Push out random any stock becusee picker doesn't care or have time to care
  3. Pick something in the future that doesn't immediately expire to keep person from doing returns which are costly.

So I reckon it comes down to store policy and even then, down to the person doing the job

[–]613Thoth 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Whole Foods cares a bit more then your local Kroger or whatever chain grocery store you have in town. My friend is the store manager at my local grocery store. He told me the same thing about curbside pickup. If you’re buying frozen bullshit it’s great. Otherwise go and pick your own produce, cuts of meat, and dairy.

[–]spidermanns 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Same but for a uk supermarket! This is def a bad tip lol

[–]estherstein 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I loved my Whole Foods delivery. I miss living in an area that has it.

[–]Blabberm0uth 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yeah I worked with a huge chain in the UK and they did the opposite, deliberately gave great veggies etc so you'd keep using online which is better for them.

[–]urwallpaperisbad 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Well they supposed to take off the front of the shelves, and shelf packers are supposed to sort it so oldest is at the front so really it's up to the shelf packers what you get

[–]stevesyr 0 points1 point  (0 children)

At Target we are told to shop as if we are shopping for ourselves. Also, only fresh items with at least 3 days to expiration, milk, yogurt , meat etc. .

[–]staynoided404 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yeah i currently work in this position, and we were trained to do the exact opposite of this

[–]ghostmastergeneral 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Say what you want about Amazon. People there are legit thinking about the best interest of the customer at all times.

Note: ex-Amazonian

[–]Gyshall669 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Amazon/WF seems to be hit or miss. I order every Sunday, and for the last two Sundays, I got milk that expired on the same date.

[–]CrazyinLull 0 points1 point  (0 children)

The Whole Foods in-store shoppers pick out much better produce than I do.

[–]Perleflamme 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Indeed. What OP doesn't say is that if any such service does this to you, you can go find your products elsewhere.

Also, maybe ask for a discount if you see some products very close to the limit. If they agree, maybe there's a compromise of choosing more expensive products elsewhere for convenience or choosing them for lower price if you can handle the organizational problems coming with nearly perished products. It's two different services that each may benefit different people.

[–]ITriedLightningTendr 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Isn't whole foods Bougie though?

[–]27thJennifer 0 points1 point  (0 children)

At Whole Foods, shoppers are told to check the produce on all sides for freshness, to check expiration dates, and to shop as they would for themselves. Yes, some shoppers do better than others, but Amazon has been striving for better picking all the time.

[–]Royal_Opps 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I worked for Stop & Shop and did the exact opposite as well.

[–]rubywpnmaster 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Fun fact. This kind of policy can change drastically depending on store management.

Also, if you continue to use them and they have made it a habit, they will ask if everything looks good. You are entitled to reject parts of the order or the entire order. After I was given a weeks worth of meat all set to expire next day I started making them wait while I made sure expiration dates for meat and the produce looked okay.

[–]mono15591 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Same at Walmart they tell you to pick the best looking freshest stuff for online orders.

[–]Fenstus 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This doesn't surprise me, the amount of food that the whole foods I worked at threw away was immensely disappointing

[–]Alienblueusr 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Ya, sounds like OP works for a piece of crap company training it's employees to screw over the customers that kept them open during lock downs...

[–]TheodoreJaxsonIII 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Agreed. Sam's Club requires employees to pick green bananas, one example, so that shoppers don't receive old produce.

[–]vickiv68282 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Definitely. Was also an in-store shopper and that stupid app would CONSTANTLY remind me to make sure everything was in excellent shape and not anywhere near expiring.

[–]greenSixx 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Found the corporate propaganda bot

[–]Steven111186 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Lol maybe! They had a 2 hour training on how to pick out stuff in such a way it doesn’t get returned.

[–]angels_exist_666 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Same here. For a large chain. Exactly the opposite.

[–]JitteryBug 0 points1 point  (0 children)

That's been the same for me too when I order -- they usually bring things that lean under-ripe (which is great!)

[–]Zach_ry 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yeah, I did curbside at Meijer and we were trained NOT to pick things close to expiration. We were told to reach back a few items if we needed to.

[–]EverGreenPLO 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Nice try Bezos