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Friday, September 3, 2010

Post # 143- Land o' Lakes Half and Half / Egg Substitute Mix-Up - 2/19/2010

Dear Land O’ Lakes,

I run a roach coach for Fortune 500 corporations. My day begins at 4AM. I load the truck with bagels, cream cheese, pastries, fresh fruit, individual cereals, candy, chips, and juices, sodas and milk. I prepare some breakfast burritos with eggs (or egg substitute), sausage, and cheese. I prepare buttered toast, etc. And I always set up a coffee station—coffee, creamer, and sweeteners. This takes two hours to prepare, and allows me to arrive at my first customer at 6:45 on the nose

Sometimes, people give me a gratuity, other times they don’t. Some regulars do it periodically. It’s always appreciated, never expected. But some people think that we in the service industry hold a grudge against the non-tipping sub-set of the population. I don’t.

Last Friday, I was in a hurry. I forgot the half and half and had to turn around. I reached in the cooler and grabbed the carton, and headed off. When I arrived, my third customer, Pippen requested a 16 ounce coffee with two creams. I poured the coffee and opened the Half and Half, dispensing two creams for the man my peers refer to as “No-Tippin’ Pippen”. Now, at this point, I should point out that the lighting was bad.

As I proceeded to serve my next few customers, Pippen storms back angry, claiming that I’m trying to poison him for never tipping. He said his coffee tasted like eggs. He said my Half and Half had turned. I checked the date--three more weeks. Then Pippen points out, in front of everyone that my Half and Half isn’t Half and Half at all. It’s Egg Substitute.  He accused me of "punishing" him for being a bad tipper.

The Egg Substitute carton and the Half and Half cartons are identical. Can you imagine my embarrassment? I can’t believe that I’m the first person to grab the wrong carton and start pouring. Why don’t you change your carton? Make it different enough. How do you expect folks who can’t see that well to easily discern between the two cartons?

Think about it. Let me know how we fix this.



Date: Fri, 19 Feb 2010 12:09:32 -0600

Subject: Re: Land O'Lakes Ref #: 748315

Thank you for visiting the Land O'Lakes Web Site and taking the time to contact us.

Your email has been forwarded to the appropriate product specialist for handling. You should receive a response shortly.

Please let us know if we can be of assistance in the future. If you need to respond to this email, please use the "Reply" button.


Land O'Lakes Consumer Affairs
Case: 748315

Subject: Our Response to Your Email
Date: Thu, 25 Feb 2010 15:14:48 -0500

Thank you for your e-mail to alert us of the recent experience you had with Land O Lakes®. We have notified our Quality Assurance Department so they can investigate this matter.

Best quality food products have been WhiteWave Foods’ passion since its beginning. Around here, every single person shares that goal and takes pride in our record of achievement. Incidents like the one you reported are rare, and we apologize for the inconvenience.

For us, the good news is that you cared enough to let us know about it. Thank you for that. You will receive four coupons in the mail within 7-10 business days.

We hope you will continue to enjoy our products.


Yvonne Ortega
Consumer Response Representative
Ref: N1003022
Subject: FW: Our Response to Your Email
Date: Thu, 25 Feb 2010 23:10:42 -0500

Dear Yvonne,

You’re dealing with someone who won a Half and Half Guzzling Contest in 2005. Question not my loyalty.

I get a little concerned when I hear you use words like Incident and Quality Control. This isn’t one carton of your creamy network that missed your QC Department’s sharp eyes. This is every carton that you ship. Every carton that Alex stocks at the Piggly Wiggly. Every drop that No Tippin’ Pippen sips in his morning java. It’s a carton design problem.

I would recommend involving your design team. Have them brainstorm something—maybe a sexy new container. Something that Buck Rogers might enjoy in his coffee.


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