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Incensed with Whole Foods: Enough Incompetence!

So it seems that not only is San Francisco fed up with Whole Foods http://www.chowhound.com/topics/421849 -- just last night I purchased some Vermont Butter & Cheese brand Mascarpone to prepare dessert for guests tonight.

Well, well, well ... the $5 8oz. tub turned out to not only have already been opened, it was used and completely spoiled. Yes, the weather of late has been really hot, things can go wrong, but I would have never -- ever -- expected to experience this. Particularly as last month I had to return some shrimp back to the seafood department **within 5 minutes of checking out** (guests allergic to shellfish) and was given major attitude, all angry and "now we can't sell this" business. I hadn't even finished loading the car when the call came in.

So tonight was really frustrating. No home-made dessert, unwilling to return this mess back to the store. Simply served cut-up fruit drizzled with Absolut Raspberri and sent everyone home. We're still drinking...

I'm fed up. Too many angry customers, rude staff (when you can find anyone at all -- good luck at the cheese department in Newton or Newtonville), unwilling to check for something possibly out of stock, crappy baggers. The florists and produce teams, however, have usually been kind. I'll give them that.

Is it me? Am I a bad-luck magnet of late, or have others been experiencing this as well?

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  1. At the Newtonville WF, I've gotten old fish, old vegetables, and lots of milk/cream that has gone bad within days. Wednesday I tried to buy olive oil but someone was stocking and wouldn't budge. He was so bothered by my attempts to buy a product that I ended up saying "excuse me" to him. And yesterday I opened a pack of 6 flour tortillas... that had 5 tortillas in it.

    BIG downhill report for WF Newtonville.

    1. I don't shop there too often. Usually I can't find what I want there - I've been longing for good ol' Bread & Circus (was just thinking of posting this today!)

      My son was talking about this just yesterday - Whole Foods is just too generic. It doesn't have the soul that was there w/Bread & Circus.

      1. And watch out, they are trying to buy Wild Oats and put a whole monopoly on the whole food/high end grocery market. Your latest experience is unacceptable. And, the one positive point you made (floral department) I've had a bad experience. Twice recently, I've had flowers last less than 24 hours while being held in good conditions.

        On a side note, many grocery stores have no return policies on all fresh meat and seafood. Not to defend them at all, but I think you'll find many stores with the same policy on returning the shrimp.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Girl Friday

          It's not a grocery store policy - fresh meats and seafoods cannot be resold based on Massachusetts regulations. And I think that's good. Even during a five minute walk out the door that meat or seafood is not under refrigeration.

          1. re: Girl Friday

            Try Publix if it is anywhere near you. They are wonderful in customer service! You can return anything and they will never question you, just give you your money back. Whole Foods has some very good deals on wine, and if you buy six bottles,they do not have to be the same, you get an extra 10% off. I really do like their cheese dept., they have been very nice and very helpful. I guess it just depends on what store you go to.

          2. Hi Tealilliy, would you mind telling us what places you like to shop and eat at?

            1. I would still have complained to the store. Clearly they need to be more proactive about removing perishables that are past their expiration date from the shelves. Which location was this? Have you had poor experiences at other WF? This just illustrates one of the main reasons why I prefer TJ's over WF - the TJ no hassle return policy.

              1 Reply
              1. re: kallis33

                I just reread the thread and my original reply doesn't make sense. I thought that the marscpone was spoiled and past its expiration date when the OP puchased it. Clearly I should not be posting before getting my morning java fix. The shrimp thing I agree with everyone else - it is not something you should be able to return.