Has anyone else noticed how hard it is to find some things in grocery stores that were once common?
Today was the Great Battle of the Mushrooms and Pearl Onions.
My mission: to make pickled eggs with pearl onions and mushrooms.
I needed pearl onions and loose mushrooms.
My grocery store, which is otherwise pretty good, absolutely didn’t have pearl onions. I recall when they were easy to find, nestled in their little net bags. Also, there were no loose mushrooms. Instead, all they had were those prepackaged cardboard trays, covered with plastic wrap that holds condensation!
Does anyone else remember when the mushrooms were all loose and they had little paper bags to put them in, because everyone knows a damp mushroom is a sad, soggy mushroom?
I searched across three grocery chains and didn’t find better. I had to buy “knob onions” at three times the price and some of those odious little cardboard trays.
The spouse was mad, I was mad. Nobody listened when I complained.
More and more, grocery stores (and other stores too) choose what they want me to have, in what quantities they want me to have it in, all in plastic packaging. If I want to get away from that, I have to go to the incredibly expensive high end stores, even though bulk food should cost far less because there’s less packaging and less waste.
The real problem I have is not so much the food, but the fact that I can’t get anything to change no matter how many managers I talk to. Even as I submit my feedback forms and am thanked for my opinion, nothing changes. I make calls till I’m blue in the face and still nothing changes. What’s a dissatisfied shopper to do?
I shouldn’t be surprised. After all, customer service is a barrier between you and the people who make decisions.
The real key here is to get to the decision makers.
I realized there is a potential solution here. I am going to take it higher, and if you share my frustration, you can too. Enter the old fashioned letter! I’ll be searching for corporate hierarchy, finding names and addresses to people who really do make decisions. I send letters by registered mail, so that they actually get into the hands of the people I’m sending them to, instead of getting lost in the mailroom.
Little by little, that gets results.
I found that if I can get past the ramparts of customer service, past the corporate donjon, and into the actual throne room, then my letter lands in the hands of the actual rulers of the corporate kingdom – and my lonely letter heads arrow straight to the place where all the calls, forms and emails couldn’t reach.
The more we all do this, the more we will make ourselves heard. The actual views of the customer will be infused into the corporate system and be heeded, perhaps someday even more than any number of useless focus groups.