Watchdog, that mighty defender of consumers against BS marketing and advertising claims, turns its gaze to the produce aisle of Woolworths in this edition, questioning just how fresh the Fresh Food People really are.
Woolworths: Hi, how can I help you today?
Watchdog: I’ve got a bit of a weird one for you, I’ve been watching Woolworths’ advertising during the tennis and hearing them talk about being the fresh food people.
Woolworths: Okay then.
Watchdog: I’m a person who loves a good apple, and I was recently reading that Coles got pinged last year by the ad watchdog for claiming apples stored for three months were spring fresh. So I wondered if the same is true of Woolworths …
Woolworths: So ...
Watchdog: I was wondering how long the apples I buy at one of your stores had been in storage for.
Woolworths: No worries, can I ask which store you shop at?
Watchdog: [Gives away location, like a fool]
Woolworths: Okay, what I’ll do is give them a call and ask them.
Watchdog: [Watchdog listens to jazzy hold music]
Woolworths: Okay, so they get a delivery each morning and it’s stored in a cool room, not a freezer. But that cool room is emptied each day and then re-supplied each morning, so you’re never getting an apple that’s more than a day old.
Watchdog: But where do they come from? Are they stored in some kind of central Woolworths warehouse first?
Woolworths: No, they come from various vendors in the state.
Watchdog: Do you know how long they’re stored at the vendors for?
Woolworths: To be honest, I wouldn’t know. It depends on the vendor.
Watchdog: Okay then, thanks for your time.
VERDICT: So Woolies apples are never more than a day old from when they reach the store – that’s nice. But how long are they stored at the mysterious vendor for? Watchdog is none the wiser about just how fresh the fresh food people are.
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