Whole foods has been caught red-handed ripping off its customers by inflating prices- and this isn’t the first time it’s happened.
Yesterday, New York’s Department of Consumer Affairs revealed they are investigating the supermarket chain for “continuously overcharging for pre-packaged foods”.
In 2012, Whole Foods paid over $800,000 in penalties for over pricing irregularities that took place in California, according to the DCA.
The current investigation, which has been going on since the fall, covered all 8 Whole Food markets in the NYC area and uncovered that they are overcharging customers by overstating the weight of pre-packaged meat, dairy and baked goods.
Department of Consumer Affairs Commissioner Julie Menin said that the price gouging amounts varied, but all that were tested were overpriced (over 80 different types and hundreds of different individual products).
Among their most glaring discoveries were: a package of coconut shrimp overpriced by $14.84, a package of chicken tenders overpriced by $4.85, and a vegetable platter $6.15 higher than it should be.
Whole Foods responded to these allegations through email, telling reporters: “We disagree with the DCA’s overreaching allegations.” It also said the department had made “grossly excessive monetary demands” to settle, but they didn’t disclose the amount.
The investigation is still ongoing, so no fines have been assessed yet.
Consumers are angry and many feel fines aren’t enough, since they have been fined in the past yet are still practicing these deceptive tactics to rip-off its customers.
Many have taken to the company’s Facebook page, expressing their anger and urging customers to shop elsewhere.
One consumer wrote: “I went into WF once, saw the outrageous prices and left. Now I understand why! Shame on you!!
If there is a farmers market nearby, shop there for fresh fruit and produce!!
Consumers who are upset can write or post complaints to Whole Food’s website and can also boycott the chain until changes are made, according to a consumer advocate we spoke with.
What do you think of Whole Foods overpricing customers? Weigh in with your opinion below.