05 December 2010

Coles: Possibly the worst cherries I've ever seen, Randwick (5 Dec 2010)

148 Belmore Road Randwick NSW 2031

Oh dear, they're awful!

So there I was shopping for a few groceries for dinner in Coles when I came across the boxes of cherries at the end of the fruit and vegetable section next to the check out counters. I couldn't believe the disgusting looking cherries on offer at around $18 a kilo — some of them were literally so bruised and spoilt I was expecting to see flies or maggots coming out of them. Definitely not fit for consumption and very sub-standard. I read I'm not the only one that has been disappointed with the fruit and vegetables you sometimes find in Coles and Woolworths which are so proudly promoted by Celebrity Chefs these days. I truly wish they'd sort out the Coles in Randwick — it's quite a disgrace and quality checking seems to be non-existent. I don't really understand how the fruit can get to this awful state without being noticed by management and staff?

I much prefer to shop at the Royal Randwick Fruit Market across the road where they seem to take great pride in their produce and quality checking but unfortunately when it's very late in Randwick there's no other options but Coles.

Dear Reader, where's the best and cheapest cherries in Sydney these days? I spotted some at a fruit stand on Hunter Street last week for $8/kilo.

Bad looking cherries, 7.30 pm, 5 Dec 2010

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Somer said...

I strongly endorse Coles and Woolworths, they have the best deals on Coke and toilet papers. As for the rest, never shopped for groceries and never will.

MissDissent said...

I almost never shop at Coles or Woolworths, and if I do, I would never buy meat, cheese or fresh fruit and vegetables. I want my money to support good farming practices, designed by farmers interested in sustainability, not by suits interested in making money. Those cherries are the worst I have seen this season!

Kristy Sayer said...

Unfortunately fresh fruit and veg EVERYWHERE hasn't been the greatest lately due to this ridiculous weather we've been having. I guess the poor trees/plants don't know what's going on.
I don't buy fresh produce from Coles generally, but I've found even the fruit market is suffering - which sucks when 90% of your diet is fruit and vegetables.

Ivy said...

As Kristy says, fruit and veg are suffering everywhere. It's not entirely Coles' fault. The cherry crop in Young has been devastated by the rain, and most growers are advising the fruit just won't get to Sydney without spoiling in transit. But what's Coles or Woollies or any other fruit and veg retailer to do? It's December and for Aussies, that means cherries, weather or not.

joey@FoodiePop said...

Did you tell them the cherries were substandard? I doubt anyone would actually care, being a supermarket.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

I've actually rung Coles Randwick three times to complain about them selling expired or out of date food. It's really awful and I haven't experienced that at other Coles branches, just Randwick.

Sara @ Belly Rumbles said...

I was in canberra just recently and cherries up there are gorgeous, plus there are beautiful ones around in Sydney.

I think it is just typically Coles. I know the fruit and veges at Kareela store are often plagued with fruit fly and other flying things as well the produce looks half rotten, not sure why people buy it.

Blue Penguin said...

Sharing the disappointment, Simon... even at the shiny new Coles in Waterloo. The strawberries are either forced and pale, or so overripe as to barely last a day - what they do with them between these two states is beyond me. The last straw, though, was the miniature slug amidst the last punnet. No more berries at Coles, I think...

Simon Food Favourites said...

hi somer, actually i'll have to correct you, ALDI has the best deals on toilet paper except for cabramatta where you can get those massive 48 rolls packs for around $20 but i don't think i'd trust it as much as ALDI :-)

hi missdissent, that's a worthy philosophy to have which i fully support.

hi kristy, let's hope there's some good places around to get great produce still.

hi ivy, i think i can live without my cherries, especially bad ones. Summer means mangoes to me. i feel sorry for the farmers who have spent all year growing their crops and only to be destroyed by weather at last minute. it must be devastating for them.

hi joey, i actually emailed them via their website feedback form and they said they'll be contacting the store to make sure they do a better job. they said they pride themselves on providing fresh produce but i have my doubts much will happen.

hi lorraine, i think more people should complain about it and then hopefully they'll do something about it. i complained via the email feedback form and did get a response that they'll be contacting the store manager.

hi sara, the kareela store sounds really awful. i reckon all the food bloggers in sydney should do a spot raid and then report back on where the best cherries might be found.

hi blue penguin, oh no, a slug has got to be the worst. i don't think i've ever been impressed with the strawberries in coles or woolworths. i've always spotted a few punnets with mould growing and hence avoid buying any at all. straight from the farmers markets is usually the best. there's a guy that sells strawberries at the Sydney Fish Markets near the car pack for really cheap and they seem pretty good.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I have only just discovered your blog! I also live at Randwick (The Spot) so love reading your reviews of local restaurants. I am constantly whinging about how awful Coles Randwick is. I work long hours so the Royal Randwick shops are shut and Coles is my only option. The quality of produce and meat is so much worse than any Coles I have ever been to. I bought some lamb steaks last night that looked quite lean and then I got home and the whole bottom side was FAT that they had hidden. I get so excited when I am at Westfields and get to shop at Woolies there. Anyway, rant over, keep up the good blogging work !!

Simon Food Favourites said...

hi Anonymous, thanks for dropping by. hopefully if enough customers tell them how bad it is then they might do something about it. you can always send your feedback to them online as well which i did. you're lucky to live in The Spot — lots of places to eat :-) hope to try El Bulli this year.

Anonymous said...

Just came about your blog after a "last straw" moment.

I used to shop there on a frequent basis, I now go to Woolies at Bondi for all my groceries simply because it's cleaner.

I went to the delicatessen to get some last minute sandwich ham.

20 people were waiting to be served, only one staff member was serving, the young girl requested back up which fell on deaf ears on the PA.

Eventually when I was served, I did complain to the staff member and enquired on why there was no staff. She did apologise (was very polite and made sure my needs were catered for) however she said that complaints usuallu either fall on deaf ears or the poor lass gets into trouble for not serving fast enough.

It's not about being served fast enough, it's about bodies in the department and how this company being a multi million dollar enterprise who are too stingy about paying their staff wages etc.

To top it all off, the department was filthy and the ham was green.

I requested to speak to the store manager after this,

- Store Manager is rude and thought my complaint was a joke.
- He couldn't even apologise for their wrong doing, and later I noticed him ripping into the poor girl at the deli about the state of the department. The poor girl is trying her best to serve and clean the department, but when she's the only one in the department, yes faults are to be made!

This time He should take the blame on himself and hire more staff!

I sent a complaint to Coles, 2 months later, I'm still waiting for a response

Simon Leong said...

hi Anonymous, thanks for the comment. i feel sorry for that poor girl trying to do her best under the conditions she's put into. Woolworths across the road are starting to stock some fruit and vegetables but the deli, chicken shop, bread shop and royal randwick fruit market are places i prefer to go now :-) i hope they eventually respond to your complaint if they want to make things right.

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