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Fight in checkout line brings up freedom question

Written By: Terry Foster | July 1, 2012

Filed Under: Uncategorized

Little B and I were finishing up the last of our errands Saturday afternoon when I noticed a man screaming in one of the Kroger checkout lines.

“Why not? Why not?”

I was about to go into his aisle when I noticed he had three shopping carts filled with Pepsi, Vernors and Cokes. I estimated his haul at 40 eight packs of bottled soda. I figured he was going to be there for a while. That was a lot of pop and the man did not seem too pleased. The cashier told the man he could not buy that much pop. There was a limit of eight cases or eight packs he could buy.

The customer was angry and raising his voice for all to hear.

Employees began to gather around and whisper.

“Have a nice day,” the cashier said.’

The customer insisted that he call the store manager. He came and told him the same thing. Someone whispered that they believed he was a party store owner who wanted to get the sale price on the pop and sell it for profit at his store. That made sense. The other issue is I am sure Kroger did not want to tick off other customers that came in Sunday looking for pop for the Fourth of July holidays.

It was a strange occurrence. The man would not move and the Kroger cashier and his manager would not budge. My son B wondered if a fist fight was going to break out. I assured him cooler heads would prevail. It did. The funny thing is a few minutes earlier B noticed that cream cheese was on  sale for $1 per container. He said we could buy 100 cream cheese for $100.

I laughed and said there was no way we could eat it fast enough before it spoiled. We’d have to give most of it away.

“Thank you and have a nice day,” the manager said to the irate customer. “You are welcome to buy eight packs.”

The man muttered something about freedom and stormed off leaving the pop on the counter where three employees finally removed them and restocked the shelves.  When you think about it the battle was an interesting give and tug on freedom in this country. The man should have been free to buy as much soda as he wanted. On the other hand the store should have the right to limit quantities.

In the end the store was right. I hate going to the grocery store for something and them being out of stock. The bottom line is it is better to tick off one guy than the 100 who will follow.

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3 Responses to “Fight in checkout line brings up freedom question”

  1. Jason Says:

    Many time stores will sell a product at no or a very small profit to bring people in for other products. As I understand that is another reason they put limits on the quantity. I have also seen the party store and smaller establishements use bridge cards at major stores to buy inventory.

    Reply

  2. bill Says:

    The comment above was dead on. As a former beverage sales rep this used to go on all the time. Guy goes to the store,buys 20 cases of pop at 25 cents a unit,and sells it for $1.29.Believe it or not major retailers do not turn much profit on actual multi-pack pop. (12 packs,6 packs,etc) P.S the comment on the bridge card was right also,I had store owners that would take the guy dumping the bridge card shopping and tell them what to buy for the store.Happened all the time

    Reply

  3. Ron Says:

    I agree with the gentlemen above. The larger stores are able to sell at a lower price due to the quantity that they sell, and the profit margins are very small.

    In my opinion, the (possible) store owner acting like that is an absolute shame, and definitely no way to treat employees of a store who are simply enforcing the rules put forth. Killing the messenger is never the right way to handle a situation like that.

    It’s also obvious that the offender doesn’t give a damn about anyone but himself, and was probably never told “no” as a child.

    As far as the abuse of the bridge cards and such, it is a crying shame what I see in our neighborhood with the system abuse. I see entirely too many people who drive cars that are worth more than our house, and then they walk into a store and pay with a bridge card.

    The working class people are paying for that abuse. Thanks.

    OK, Rant over. Carry on.

    I love your articles, Mr. Foster! Keep up the good work.

    Reply

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