No follow through or improvement following complaints to symbol franchise supermarket



We have come across a problem in our local Franchise Supermarket in the Midlands.

For as many years that I have lived in this town I had bad experiences of buying ambient/ fresh food items from this particular shop.

We buy e.g. Potato Salad or fruit-trifle and find later that the products are out of date (1 day or 2 days)!

We (myself and friends) always complain and they refund or give option to replace it with another similar item.

We insist on filling a complaint form. The Customer Service staff are not very happy about it (the look on their face as if we are committing a crime).

They note down our complaint in a hard bound register, at other times they cant find the complaint register and ask for coming back later. They never give a complaints form.

In over 10 years, we have never heard anything after this complaint procedure. No phone call or letter addressing this issue.

Another issue with this particular shop is that items are placed under wrong price tags e.g. where a price ticket on shelf says 99c for bread, it turns out to be much more than 99c when at 'tills'.

If one asks staff about it they will simply say: "this is not the 99c one". We have complained about it so many times that now we don't even bother to complain because it will be just waste of customer time. Staff will ask you to show where we picked up this item? And then we will be assured it will be corrected. Return 4 hours later, NO CHANGE in merchandising.

We now believe that they do it all on purpose, to maximise profits they don't bother to write off items even after "sell by date" has passed.

They place items under wrong tickets on purpose too. The chances are that once you are at the cashier, staff will scan them, you wont even notice it & if you notice it, you would be at home and kids would have opened this item already! or if you spot it you would be too embarrassed to return the item.

In the local Tesco supermarket there is a policy of "double the refund" if you find an item wrongly priced. So it never happens there. I have never found a single item wrongly priced or placed under wrong ticket.

As a consumer how do we proceed with this problem? The owner is a local man who is at good terms with the local community and has loyal (read blind-faith) customers.

Should we bring this matter to the attention of the franchiser i.e. Musgrave? Suggestions welcome.


Registered User
Why on earth would you bother shopping there? Vote with your feet, take your business elsewhere.

I used to give our local franchise supermarket regular business but after too many out of date or gone off food experiences I have cut back completely and only buy dried or tinned items there for convenience if Im in a hurry. I dont even see it as a place that sells meat or fresh food anymore.



Ive expanded your title somewhat to more fully reflect your question. Let me know if this is ok.

I agree with you entirely and think that many (but not all) franchise operators just dont understand the notion of customer service and quality.

Fergal Quinn has written extensively about it and I would recommend his books to these operators!

There is nothing worse than bringing something to the attention of the shop only to have them make the same mistake over and over again.

We all depend on the local convenience shop from time to time but do not expect out of date produce, improperly priced items or officious form fillings as a substitute for corrective / preventive action.


Plek Trum

Registered User
Perhaps you should write directly to head office detailing your issues and requesting a response? I say this because we have EXACTLY the same issue in our local franchise shop, Musgraves being head office 'C' being link.

Constant and repetitive mis pricing, over charging, 3for2 offers not being applied etc etc. We dont shop there for anything anymore bar the small one or two items when we are stuck and even then we keep an eye on prices and , on a frequent basis, there are irregularities.

Staff are aware of it each time, never surprised and refund money, re-apply the advertised discount when questioned. Seems to be a regular thing. In my office, ALL of us have been overcharged!

Letter to Head Office if it bothers you or maybe check out Me personally, vote with your feet and take your money elsewhere. Silly of small local franchise shops to operate this way epsecially when we would much prefer to shop locally and support local jobs.


Registered User
Fool me once, shame on you

Fool me twice, shame on me

Fool me for 10 YEARS???

It's apparently a sign of madness doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting a different outcome each time.

Just stop shopping there, tell all your friends to stop shopping there. The message might just get through.


Registered User
In the local Tesco supermarket there is a policy of "double the refund" if you find an item wrongly priced. So it never happens there. I have never found a single item wrongly priced or placed under wrong ticket.

How I wish this was true. I do approx €100 shop once weekly in Tesco and about €5 worth of goods would be wrong. "Double the difference" is not worth to the consumer what the "full refund and free item" was. The hassle of queuing in the station where they do Lotto etc and then waiting for someone to come after they being called over the system and then go do a check and then always a little fight.....

We have a local filling station shop which dont give receipts (one has to ask first before they start the check-in).