I bought 2 lbs. of red seedless grapes at the supermarket for $1.99 per lb. It didn't occur to me to test them first. They are so bitter they can't be eaten. Has anyone ever returned fresh produce?
Sure, why not? It's so irritating to get home and discover you have bad food. We bought a bag of avacadoes recently -- every one of them was bad. I didn't take them back, but I'm taking back some eggs today. I usually am very good about checking expiration dates when shopping, but yesterday I was a bit tired and not on guard. I got home and discovered that my eggs had expired a couple of days before I bought them. I'm taking them back today.
Once I bought a crab clear across town while I was on some errands. It wasn't my usual grocery store, but I was in the area. Never again. The crab was awful -- not edible. Had it been my local grocery store, I would have bundled the crab up and taken him back. I did, however, call the store and told them about it so that they could check their stock. What I should have done was ask for a gift card or something for my trouble. . .
Sure--take them back! That's too much money to waste. I took a watermelon back this summer. It just tasted BAD!
I really sense a couple of different questions. First, if the question is whether it's "tacky" or something to return bad produce, I say return it and don't feel bad about it. Most stores have a legitimate policy of customer satisfaction (within reason) and if you're unhappy with it, sure, return it. There's nothing wrong with doing a return. Especially at $2/#. Same for deli items or other items. I have a limit of $1.29/# for grapes. Just one of those things with me! :) They'd have to be exceptional to go above that. It's just one of those quirks.
But now comes the flip side of the coin, being the point of practicality. I've bought grapes without trying them and same thing, got a bad batch a couple of times. First, it was seeded instead of seedless. I didn't pay attention so I didn't think about returning them. Second time they were just plain awful. Now the catch. It's not convenient to run back to the store to return a couple dollars worth of items and the principle just wasn't that big a deal with me. For me to return to a store would cost just in gas nearly the amount paid. So in my case the birds benefited (who were very happy) and I learned to test them before buying them. I am running about 50/50 on whether I'll buy them or not after a sample. If it were convenient and close and I had the time and received bad product, I'd return it. FWIW, my cousin brought up an issue. He bought some generic French Fried Onions and they were rancid. Obviously they were old. Since his hobby is grocery shopping I said I'd take it back if I were him. He did, and they had no problem with it. Most stores will bend over backward (again, within reason) to satisfy a customer, especially when it's a bad product issue.
Now comes another issue: I do not approve of grazing but I feel justified in testing them. Course, they're not washed so I take a certain chance with that and even with other items you don't really know whether it's good or not, for instance, melon, radishes, onions and the like. I would have a problem seeing someone cut open a melon to test or grazing away at the other produce!
For me, it's come down to the store itself. If they generally have good stuff, occasionally they can get a bad one or batch. And I avoid buying at places with consistently substandard product.
I probably will take them back as it is on my way to the gas station, etc. This store has consistently excellent produce, but $4 is $4. Never thought to give them to the birds.
Thanks for your input.
I don't think sampling produce is "grazing." My store encourages customers to sample and will even cut fruit open for sampling. They don't mind if you try a grape.
I drive out of my way to go to a great market - just fresh food: produce, dairy, meats - no cans, paper goods etc. All the fruit is cut up for tasting. Such a pleasure to know for sure the pears or berries or apples are what you want. And when I once did get bad pears and mentioned it, they insisted on a refund even though I hadn't returned them. Sometimes I pay more than the corner grocery, and I do use gas to travel there...but this is my food!!
I took them back and got an exchange for really tasty ones. No problem with the exchange at all.
I cooked a roast chicken , and when I went to serve it it tasted BAD, like chemicals. I threw it away, but went back to the store. I had no receipt or anything,and the chicken was long tossed. The manager was quite nice, said there had been no other complaints, but he gave me a cooked rotisserie chicken for FREE.
It would never occur to me to try the produce before buying...because i was brought up with, "it isn't ours till it's paid for" mantra. But I've returned things to various grocery stores, small, local ones and big ones too. Never had a problem. At some point, though, I realized that market X, the neighborhood grocery, and Market Y, the superstore, were never going to have really good meat. I have given up on them.
I always return items when there is something not right. I do it when I happen to be in the same area as the store - generally not going out of my way. I have had excellent results....even double amounts of items purchased. So complain, yes I do - but only when it is called for.