Fresno Information

and Visitors Guide






The day July 11th 2012.

It was 110 today and my wife and I thought we would go to Save Mart for one of their wholesome prepared meals.

We thought a cool sandwich and macaroni salad would fit the bill. 

You can see that it was packed with care by Alex with a Sell By date of July 14, 12.

I would have thought it to be fresh, the 14th is 3 days away. How many days is a sandwich like this good for?

Well, we were hot and hungry and opened this baby up. To our surprise we found the macaroni salad with a Use By date of July 5th, 2012 see photo below. Note that as of the 11th it was already 6 days past the Use By date. The Sell By date on the outer package is 9 days after the Use By date. This isn't some benign product- this could cost a persons life.



My wife called the store and talked to someone who claimed to be the store manager. I say claim because I find it hard to believe what she was told could be from someone in management.

This is my wife's accounting of the conversation with the store manager to the best of her recollection:

"I asked to speak with a manager and was turned over to someone named Robert. I explained the situation. Robert kind of chuckled and told me that he had had the same thing happen to him there, but that he didn't have to go as far to yell at somebody. The solution he offered was for me to throw out the macaroni salad and told me that the sandwich was probably ok. He said that the sandwich was probably made 2-3 days prior. Next he told me that he was going to enjoy going in back to yell at someone. I asked him if I was supposed to be happy with that as a solution for my loss of dinner and he asked "What do you want me to do?"  I explained that he should know what to do, that he had not even offered to replace the meal. After more frustration, he told me that I would be entitled to bring the meal back for replacement."

I could not believe this Robert had no concern for customer safety THE SELL DATE OF THE PRODUCT WAS 9 DAYS AFTER THE USE DATE OF THE MACARONI SALAD. but Robert was more interested in yelling at Alex than taking care of the customer. This is an unacceptable error with a product like macaroni salad. I reported this to the Fresno County Health Department and I was told they did an inspection of the store. I was told by the health department worker that it was a good thing that my wife noticed the date because the case it was store in was note cold enough on top of being old. Eating old mayonnaise not stored at the proper temperatures can be dangerous. 

I received a call today from Tom who said that he was the store manager. He was very apologetic and wanted to make things better. I reminded him that this could have been our death meal and it would be hard to undo that. I told him I had no intention of returning to his store so he offered to send me a refund. He also said that he was talking to the bakery and would be having a talk with Robert and help him with his management skills. I will let you know when/if I receive a refund. 

Well I received a letter from Tom (I won't release his last name at this time) identifying himself as Assistant Manager at Save Mart West/Bullard. You can see the copy of his letter here. As you can see he did not send me a refund, but sent me a gift card to a store (Save Mart West/Bullard) that I had told him I didn't want to return to. So now I will have to return the sandwich and the gift card for a cash refund that I can use elsewhere. It appears that both Tom and Robert could use some customer service training. Why would he think I would want to spend more money at his store after telling him I didn't want to come back?

So I will be returning the product and gift card this week and hopefully see Tom. I will also be asking to see the most resent Health Department Inspection report (done July 12th or 13th), I want to know how far off the temps were in the cold case I got the sandwich from.

I'll post any update here.