Author Topic: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?  (Read 1250 times)

Jacana

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Hey, I don't know if I'm the only parent who never thought about this, but wow. I just returned a bunch of unopened baby food to Babies-R-Us 2 days ago (some jars, some pouches, some yogurt things and some puffs) because we discovered our little one gets a bad rash eating strawberries. I didn't even think about it... you buy something, you can't use it, you return it so someone else can and you get your money back, no big deal. But the cashier had some trouble ringing up the return, and as her colleague assisted her I overheard her say "because it can't be restocked." I asked for details, and she told me that any food, even still factory sealed, cannot be restocked, it just goes into a box in the back. I asked what happened after that, and she said she didn't know, but it was likely thrown away, and not donated to her knowledge. I only purchased that much because of a sale, and now I feel bad. If I had known, I would have given it to a local food bank or something.

I don't want to make anyone else feel guilty. I mean, if money were tight I would absolutely still return it. But at this point we are doing well and I donate money to the same food bank, so I'd rather donate the food there or give it to friends rather than let it be thrown away. And I'm going to be more careful about buying a lot of baby food that might need to be returned.

Based on a quick google search, this is true at Target and other stores too. Does anyone work in a store like this and know what happens?

Khaetra

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Re: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2017, 09:41:25 AM »
It's thrown out.   It's actually against the law for them to restock baby food that's been returned, no exceptions.

Chesleygirl

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Re: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2017, 10:10:49 AM »
Next time I'd consider just donating the un-opened food to a food bank. I'd hate to see it go to waste.

Another thing is that when people at stores pick up dairy items as they are shopping, decide not to purchase the dairy item (milk for example) and leave it sitting somewhere not in a refrigerated case. It has to be thrown out also. It cannot be restocked because the employees have no way of knowing how long the dairy item was sitting out, and so for safety reasons, they have to toss it.


Jacana

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Re: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2017, 10:25:37 AM »
It's thrown out.   It's actually against the law for them to restock baby food that's been returned, no exceptions.

Interesting. Thank you! I wish I had known this from the beginning. I think I would have been more careful. In retrospect, it makes sense.

Another thing is that when people at stores pick up dairy items as they are shopping, decide not to purchase the dairy item (milk for example) and leave it sitting somewhere not in a refrigerated case. It has to be thrown out also. It cannot be restocked because the employees have no way of knowing how long the dairy item was sitting out, and so for safety reasons, they have to toss it.

Huh, I don't think I've ever done this but yet another thing I will keep in mind now, thanks. Yes, I know our local food bank accepts and uses unopened baby food because my friend volunteers there and we've already sent over a bunch of jars that the baby didn't like. So, that's my new plan. Shop more carefully, donate instead of return. 

geekette

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Re: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?
« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2017, 01:54:42 PM »
I actually had that happen to me, too.  We were feeding our elderly cat the jars of Gerber meat puree (aka kitty crack).  When he died, I returned the last couple jars, and they tossed them.  Like you, had I known, I would prefer to have donated them.

I also was at the Sam's Club customer service desk once and there was a huge hunk of beef in a cart, a vacuum sealed sub primal.  I asked about it and the employee said that a guy had bought it for a party, then gotten a phone call that it wouldn't be needed before he even got to his car in the parking lot.  It also had to be tossed.


mies

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Re: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2017, 02:08:10 AM »
I worked at Target for several years in the 2000s and we tossed a lot of stuff. Some of it was because of laws and some of it was to avoid liability. I threw away a lot of baby furniture and stroller displays in addition to food.

Somebody brought up milk being left on shelves by customers who were too lazy to take it back to the cooler. That always annoyed me. Id be in the toy department stocking shelves or zoning and find a pack of hot dogs or a thawed Lean Cuisine mixed in with the Legos.
Less is more.

nora

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Re: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2017, 04:55:13 AM »
When I worked in a supermarket there were known customers who would take chilled items and leave them in the grocery shelves. They had mental illness and other problems.

Jacana

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Re: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2017, 05:55:54 AM »
Wow, the raw meat and frozen/refrigerated items do make sense, but cat food too? And furniture? Crazy. I think I'm going to ask what happens from now on before I return items. I sure hope women's clothing gets restocked.

geekette

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Re: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2017, 07:44:35 AM »
The Gerber meat jars we were feeding our cat was baby food, not cat food. I think cat food is fine to return.

Chesleygirl

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Re: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2017, 07:46:26 AM »
I think the stores are concerned that someone might tamper with the food, even though it appears to be unopened, so they take every precaution.

I'll think twice now before returning food to stores. I might just donate it instead.

Jacana

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Re: Returned some unopened baby food and discovered it gets discarded?
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2017, 02:07:21 PM »
The Gerber meat jars we were feeding our cat was baby food, not cat food. I think cat food is fine to return.

Sorry... more proof I need to pay more attention in life. I read Gerber but somehow did not make the connection. Despite the fact that my pantry has Gerber written in at least 10 places. I have no idea why.