Search This Site

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Post# 251 - Driscoll's: There's a Bee in My Berries

I sent this on 6/15/2011 after my daughter discovered an actual dead bee in our raspberries:

Dear Driscoll
This morning, my nine-year-old daughter tried to do a kind deed for her mother.  She was making fruit salad, sort of a breakfast in bed surprise.   She removed stems from strawberries, and added them to the bowl.  She sliced up a banana, and added that to the bowl.    She added blueberries, blackberries, and reached for the Driscoll raspberries.
My daughter came screaming upstairs to her mother.  This was a lot for mom to process, having been sound asleep and unaware of the breakfast initiative.   My daughter, who once ended up in the ER after wandering to close to the neighbor’s beehive (we fired the babysitter) found a dead bee in the raspberry container.  We think it was dead.  I don’t really know.  It was disgusting though.

Now, as a result, my daughter, who loved raspberries, won’t go near them.  I’m a little freaked out.  What if the bee fell inside the hollow part of the berry, and one of us ate it.   Is it even safe to swallow a bee?  What if, due to the refrigerator, the bee was in a state of hibernation, and being surrounded by berry juice, saliva, and chomping teeth, woke it up?  What if one of us has a bee allergy? 
I need a written explanation.  Obviously bees help make berries.  Bees are drawn to sweet smells.  They have a much easier time when they can climb right in the container.  How about smaller vent holes? 
Any information you can provide on this is greatly appreciated.
Sincerely,

Jerry
----------------------------------------
Date: Wed, 29 Jun 2011 11:39:00 -0700
Subject: Driscoll's consumer reply DSA:0026212
Dear Jerry,


It was disheartening to hear about your unfortunate experience with your recent berry purchase. I appreciate your taking the time to inform me of the bug you found in your package of berries.  At Driscoll’s, we take great pride in growing, harvesting, packaging and shipping the safest, freshest, most flavorful berries possible.  For over 100 years, Driscoll’s has been a family-owned-and-operated company with a mission to continually delight berry consumers. In this instance that was not achieved; for this we are most concerned and very sorry. 
------------------

For reference your contact has been assigned the case number below. We would like to obtain additional information about your experience and the package of berries. Please reply to this email with a contact number where you can be reached or you can call the number below at your convenience.We look forward to speaking with your and again we apologize for this negative experience.
Case number: CAS-136818-JWMTSG

Customer Service: 1-800-871-3333


Best regards,

Karah
Consumer Relations Manager
What followed was two of the same note, one dated June 21st, and one dated July 7th, each with a $5 coupon.

The letters stated:
Dear Jerry

It was disheartening to hear about your unfortunate experience with your recent berry purchase.  I appreciate your taking the time to inform us of the bug you found in your package of berries.  At Driscoll's, we take great pride in growing, harvesting, packaging and shipping the safest, freshest, most flavorful berries possible.  For over 100 years, Driscoll's has been a family-owned-and-operated company with a mission to continually delight berry consumers.  In this instance, that was not achieved; for this, we are most concerned and very sorry.  Please accept as a token of apology, the enclosed coupon(s) to be used to replace your berries.

Driscoll's has a strict Quality Assurance Program in place from the field through harvest and distribution.  We work hand-in-hand with our distribution partners to ensure that the berries you purchase are of the finest, most flavorful and nutritious quality.  Our berries are harvested and packed directly in the fields.  Because berries are very perishable, we touch them only once during the harvest process.  They are picked and placed into a plastic container, which is immediately shut when full.  From there the berries are taken to our cooler facility, where they are kept in refrigeration until after they are transferred onto refrigerated trucks and delivered to markets throughout the United States.  To ensure the utmost quality and freshness, and the longest shelf life, they are not touched again until opened by you for consumption.  Because of this, occasionally a bug or worm may find its way into a package and go undetected until the berries are ready for use.

Hopefully this information has provided some insight into the growing and harvesting process.  Again, please accept my apologies regarding your berry purchase and thank you for sharing your concerns.

Best Regards,

Elizabeth Martinez
Consumer Relations Manager
Follow me on Twitter: @hermanletters
Follow me on Facebook

2 comments:

  1. Yea, I was making raspberry sorbet, and I found a dead bee, and even though I'm 12, I screamed and knocked all the raspberries out of there container! The brand was well-pict. When they emailed back, they said the bees should be very much so sanitary, so there is nothing to worry about!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I just found one today but as long as they are harmless, I'll deal with it, as I love their berries!

    ReplyDelete