Check in - your local grocery shelves have holes? : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

I wanted to start a new thread of peoples' observations at their grocery stores. I went to two HEB's today (that is the name of a Texas chain) in Waco, TX: the one on Valley Mills Dr. and the one on Wooded Acres. Both stores had numerous holes on shelves. The product price tag was still affixed to the front of the shelf, but no product.

Naturally with the flu problem the cold/flu medicines are very low; but many varieties are completely missing. Their tags are there, but they are not. Gatorade - just about gone. Certain brands of diapers. If I were going to estimate storewide for the two stores I'd say probably about 1 out of every 12 products labeled on the shelves are completely missing.

Yes, they are rearranging some areas. Christmas things have been supplanted by lovely terracotta planters and swimming pool chemicals. But these are single items, not sections or areas. I did ask if they were running inventory and they said no.

So now I am wondering, is this like when you are shopping for a car and you settle on a certain make/model, and suddenly you see it everywhere you look? Or is this amount of empty shelf space really unusual? What is your local store like right now?

-- mommacarestx (, January 12, 2000


I've noticed missing items at Meijer's also. With end of the year inventory close at hand, I can understand some of the non-perishables not being replaced, but food items and the like are usually restocked daily.

-- Trish (, January 12, 2000.

Mommacarestx: We got holes, but not so much to dessimate our kind,

-- We live (bwyond the@[a;, January 12, 2000.

I have no idea how the store shelves look here...haven't had to go inside a grocery store in, oh, about 2 weeks ;-)

Maybe I'll go in tomorrow just to take a look around...

-- (, January 12, 2000.

RUOK, you're eating your stockpiles? Naughty, naughty, you might be sorry you did that. :-)

-- Hawk (flyin@high.again), January 13, 2000.

I was in 4 towns in Southern Az last weekend. Absolutely no shortages of anything seen here in any of the 6 stores I visited. I did notice unusually heavy traffic of truckers going both north and south (veggie trucks southbound from Mexico) on I-10. No rush at any of the stores here.

-- Aunt Bee (, January 13, 2000.

Just went to Costco today. They actually seemed to have more stock than normal - meat counter was overflowing and the bakery products were stacked pallet high. If they had a few less things, I might have gotten out of there for less than $229 (g).


-- Jim Cooke (, January 13, 2000.

Keep up the good work and report all missing items.


-- I'mSo (, January 13, 2000.

I also have been eating preps, mostly. Today at Publix--everything looked okay, nicely busy, plenty of food.

-- Mara (, January 13, 2000.


Funny it happening after the fact... mostly water (4L jugs) and milk.

I found this so only in Overwaitea (province-wide food chain)

-- (, January 13, 2000.

Mommacarestx and Aunt Bee, I went to our local Safeway here in Southern AZ, Tuesday (yesterday) about 8:30 PM, and noticed there were many holes or at least, a number of supplies were much lower than usual. Items were low in the meat section, OJ, some groceries (one large shelf with a certain brand of apples was actually empty), and other miscellaneous food and non-food items, particularly those with tags, were missing as well. I am not sure, of course, whether they were scheduled to be restocked today, and did not have time today to go and check. But it was quite obvious that this branch of Safeway did not have the usual level of supplies at hand, whatever the reason may have been. I just returned on I-10 from NM to Southern AZ and can attest to Aunt Bee's observation that trucking was heavy in our area. I travel that freeway frequently, however, truck traffic did not strike me as very different from what I usually observe.

-- Swissrose (, January 13, 2000.

"I found this so only in Overwaitea (province-wide food chain)"

A grocery store chain called "Overwaitea"? Uh... that's a joke, right? If not, it should be...


-- Scott Johnson (, January 13, 2000.

Canned goods on sale in Hampton Roads VA 3/$1 veggies, large can tomato juice .99 Campbell's; good meat prices too, $.99 pound chuck, chicken, turkey even less.

-- Hokie (, January 13, 2000.


At Scott's request (from email) here is the story behind Overwaitea...

Almost 100yrs ago, a grocer in the Fraser Valley had a habit of giving 18oz of tea when paid for a pound.

This "over-weight tea" came, over time, to be known today as Overwaitea Foods, a well-known grocery chain throughout British Columbia.

...and now you know the rest of the story!

-- (, January 13, 2000.

To make your survey a hair more reliable , I recommend doing your on- sites early in the day, say before 9:00 a.m., as many chain stores and volume discounters tend to night crews of stockboys who restock and face the shelves on the graveyard shift. Certainly I wouldn't be surprised to find OJ and other daily items understocked, if I looked for holes at 8:30 in the evening after a full days business. that is after all the whole idea behind JIT inventory -- which seems to be clicking along right well by most accounts.


-- Squirrel Hunter (nuts @upina.tree), January 13, 2000.

I went to Meijers for a gallon of whole milk. There were only 6 gallon jugs, where normally there are 48. But when I got home, I was disquieted to discover the gallon I purchased to be not only warmer than usual...but it tasted nearly stale.

This was no problem, as we still had two 1.5 litres of Sutter Home Chardonnay.

I urge you who doubt to watch your supermarkets. I noticed holes in the donuts, also in the grates in the floor and in the little plastic filter-thingies in urinals.

-- Joseph Almond (, January 13, 2000.

I just want to know why BROCCOLI IS $1.69 A POUND. never seen it before. i always thought we got imports in the winter????

-- tt (, January 13, 2000.

I haven't noticed anything odd in Flint, Michigan. Been to Meijers (two of them) and VG's (two of them) within the last couple of weeks, and it seems to be business as usual.

The supply of canned stuff was a little low at the local VG's the very beginning of the week (which seems to be fairly normal right after the weekend shopping rush), but as of yesterday, the shelves were full.

At the risk of upsetting someone... I think you guys might be looking too hard. I doubt most people here would even pay attention to this sort of thing if this weren't the year 2000.

-- *Rochelle :) (, January 13, 2000.

Instead of idly speculating what the cause of the low stock is, why the F* don't you ask the store manager?

-- ??????????? (@ .), January 13, 2000.

My expertise is in the retailing/marketing side of the business... retail is my area of expertise... As you do your observations consider the following: Long term industry averages for out of stocks is 8.2% (ongoing under good conditions.) Are the out of stocks for brands made by same companies? (Ie: is all the "Heinz katsup" gone - but private lable is available? This will help you understand if its a vendor/supplier issue or an HEB issue. Also - is it primarily grocery or Health & Beauty Care items? These often ship out of seperate warehouses - it will narrow the scope of "where is the problem?" Lastly - if its wide speard, accross every department - regardless of brand or category - this may look like a serious problem - there are numerous possible issues that are not Y2K related - I see other issues often.

I've hear

-- Sheera (, January 13, 2000.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ