ONE, being in the food industry, has emphasized the importance of calling those 800 numbers and making your likes and dislikes known. She says they take that input very seriously. Unfortunately, my experiences with the consumer relations folks has been less then sterling.
"I don't like the new Duncan Hines Brownie mix. Why did you change the recipe?"
"We're sorry you aren't happy with our product. Let me send you a refund."
"I don't want a refund, I want the old brownie mix. I'm just calling to say I don't like the new one."
A week later, in the mail arrives two lovely coupons for the brownie mix I don't like.
" Something is wrong with you packaging machinery. My Quaker chewy granola bars have been chopped off in the middle. Do you need a serial number or something to pull these lots?"
"No, we don't need anything, but I would advise against eating anything with open packaging."
"The packages are sealed, they are just not aligned with the granola bar."
"I'm sorry you're not pleased with our product. We will send you a refund."
"I'm just trying to tell you that you have a whole run of granola bars that are packaged incorrectly and you might want to check the machinery."
A week later, a check for $6 arrived. I never cashed it. I just wanted a whole granola bar.
It said, "for a limited time only" and they were the best frozen pizzas I had ever tasted. I called California Pizza Kitchens to tell them how wonderful the ham and Swiss pizzas were.
"I hope you'll keep making them. I've bought every one I could find and stockpiled my freezer."
"Is there a problem with the product?"
"Sometimes it runs over in the oven, but I figured out how to avoid this by putting it on a tray and cooking it at a higher temperature."
"You should follow the package directions."
"No matter what, I love these pizzas and hope they will continue to have them available."
Of course, I get another letter. "We are sorry to hear that the product (no mention of the pizza) you purchased did not meet your expectations. We regret any inconvenience you may have experienced and have enclosed reimbursement for your purchase." I just took that check and bought more pizza. Alas, those pizzas were for only a limited time.