April 4, 2011 – Marshalltown Hy-Vee (file under: rant)

During piano lessons, I thought I’d run to the grocery store (Hy-Vee) to get some milk. At the beginning of the frozen food aisle was a table with paper grocery bags and a sign that said “All the frozen items that you can fit into a paper bag will be 10% off!

I grabbed a sack and found just a lot of processed foods until I came to the tilapia fillets. I threw a bunch in the bag, grabbed some milk and a six-pack of a new micro-brew and hurried to the check-out. The frozen fish did not ring up with the 10% off. I asked why the frozen fish didn’t ring up with the “sack attack” discount. With a friendly smile, the checker told me with a slight hint of impatience “Frozen fish is considered to be meat and not frozen food.” The sign did not say “excludes meat.”

Using the logic that frozen fish in the frozen foods section is not frozen food, I wondered if frozen vegetables are considered produce? Is ice cream considered dairy? Is there any thing in the frozen food aisle that wasn’t something else before it was frozen?

I’m not so burned about the couple of bucks I didn’t save, but rather the thousands of others in Hy-Vees across the land who fell to the same trick. I also recall learning that Hy-Vee’s definition of “fresh meat” means meat that has only been frozen once. Perhaps what Hy-Vee really needs is a English/Hy-Vee dictionary so we can not be confused what “frozen” and “fresh” mean to Hy-Vee!

one year ago…”Signs of Early Spring”