…or why I’m fed up with their very ‘unfresh’ produce.
I don’t think there’s a sane person in South Africa who thinks our economy is all tickety boo. Even brainless imbeciles who do presidential impressions have at least a shred of awareness of…. Sorry my mistake, what was I thinking?
But here’s the thing. Despite the current upheaval and forthcoming hardships, SA food retailers still insist on offloading questionable produce at horrendous prices. Specifically, I’m mad at Woolworths (although they’re all guilty). Ignoring, for a moment, that South Africa is in the middle of Avocado Pear season, I had to buy two minute Avos for R28.00. The sporran was worn at half mast and I swooned with righteous indignation.
When cutting them open less than 24 hours after purchase (on their ‘sell-by’ deadline), they looked as if their ‘sell-by’ date should have been in 1964. Of course Woolies will politely tell you to bring it back for a refund/exchange if you’re not happy with your rotting or mauled goods; but that’s not the point is it?
For you profit-blinded retailers out there, I beg to present you with a scenario:
On a Saturday morning, I trundle your trolley around your shelves, because I’m preparing a meal for family or friends. I have in mind a menu and systematically work my way through the products to make my purchases.
Back home, I begin the preparations, only to be frustrated by products that can only have been hurled onto the shelves by a demented scrum half, or which are showing ravages of ageing worse than Goldie Hawn. The frustration and rage I feel is surpassed only the next day when I have to waste another hour and travelling costs to take my dying Avos and till slip to the Woolies branch to either get a refund, or another punnet of green uncertainty.
The most appalling fact in this whole tragedy is that each and every retailer out there knows full well that there is not enough competition to force him to improve his game. They’re all delivering less-than-optimum standards, service and products and we silent consumers just migrate from one retailer, to the next, to the next and back again in a downward spiral of acquiescence and complacency.
The South African population is too insular or fragmented to present a united, cohesive force against producers and retailers. However, I want to believe that the company willing to bear the cost of improving their offerings, market growth and long-term profitability is a foregone conclusion.