How Sainsburys caused a small tragedy

It’s my New Years Resolution to write more so I have started the year with my first piece of writing, an email to the customer services department of Sainsburys.

Dear Sir/Madam

Yesterday I was faced with a predicament, I chose the option which would harm the environment the least, however events unfolded in a unpredictable manner and unfortunately due to decisions made by Sainsburys it resulted in a disastrous outcome.  Please allow me to elaborate.

I live 1.3miles from my nearest Sainsburys supermarket, I often have to decide whether I should drive or walk, if I drive I can use the reusable carrier bags I keep in the boot of my car, if I walk I do not have this luxury and must utilise the carrier bags at the checkouts.

On this particular day I chose to think laterally about my options, in my 2003 Peugeot 206cc those 1.3miles would have generated 390 grams of carbon emissions.  Now if we take the energy required to make one plastic bag as 1.21 gigawatts, which is the best estimate I could find during my brief research, it would mean that for every 1.3 mile journey I make in my car approximately 100 carrier bags could be produced.

It seemed a no brainer, to save the environment I had to walk to the supermarket and utilise the carrier bags provided at the checkout.  The decision to go on foot also gave me the added benefit of walking my dog and exercising, which in the long run will decrease the risk of cardiovascular medical conditions which would therefore reduce my carbon footprint further as I would not need to utilise energy for electrocardiograms and other such cardiovascular monitoring investigations in the future.

With the decision made I walked to my local Sainsburys, I tied my dog up outside the store and popped inside to purchase the groceries I required.  It was like any other shopping experience at the retail change, with one minor difference.  Upon packing my produce into the carrier bags provided I realised that the plastic seemed thinner than usual.

I understand the pressure placed on supermarkets to decrease the volume of carrier bags they provide but, surely the supermarket didn’t have so little respect for their customers that they would provide them with bags so thin that their groceries were at risk of falling to the ground.

My orange squash, pine nuts and two bags of mixed nuts hurtled to the ground. 

The thickness of the bags passed briefly through my mind and I thought little of it, that was until I was walking home and disaster struck.  I was walking on the pavement along Castle Boulevard when suddenly one of my carrier bags split, my orange squash, pine nuts and two bags of mixed nuts hurtled to the ground.

The split carrier bag and the products I had to pick up which are now covered in mud.

As a supermarket I’m sure you are aware that orange squash is contained within a cylindrical container, this meant upon hitting the pavement my orange squash rolled into the road and into a puddle of muddy liquid, my other items remained on the pavement but were also covered in mud.

You might think this is a pretty terrible situation but imagine dealing with this incident whilst walking a dog, but wait, it gets worse I was also recovering from a severe fracture through the two bones in my forearm which I had recently had surgery on.  Luckily there were no road traffic accidents as a result of the incident, but imagine the carnage if the bottle of orange squash had rolled off the curb and into the path of an oncoming cyclist.

Clearly you will tell me that I must in the future reuse my carrier bags which would give me the additional benefit of gaining nectar points.  However, I am sure you will understand that it can be difficult to continuously carry empty carrier bags just in case one decides to make a spontaneous trip to the supermarket.

I have thought long and hard about how Sainsburys can apologise for this occurrence which I feel is entirely the company’s fault due to the production of flimsy carrier bags.  For the embarrassment of scrambling around for my groceries in the mud with a dog and a broken arm, for the increase in my water bill I will have to pay after I unexpectedly had to clean my groceries and for the stress I faced whilst retrieving my orange squash from the road, which was both dangerous for me and other road users: I would not like vouchers to replace the groceries and I would not like extra carrier bags.  I feel the only way to prevent this situation from happening again and for the company to compensate me well enough to allow me to grant forgivness: I will need to be provided with reusable keyring bags which are compact enough to carry on my person at all times.

Let me negotiate further

You as a company may feel that I am asking for a lot, so let me negotiate further, as a deal breaker I have come up with a number of ways the supermarket chain can be improved, now this advice would cost a fortune if it came from an independent business adviser so I’m sure you can see how much you have benefitted.

  1. Stop making flimsy plastic bags, people will only end up double bagging which will cost a greater amount to produce than the original bags.
  2. Install a computer and the end of each aisle which enables customers to search for products, this program will then direct the customer to the aisle and section of the aisle the manufactured goods are contained within.  Alternatively produce an iphone app which works in the same manner.
  3. Put vegetarian and vegan labels on all products including the bakery items.
  4. Stop discontinuing lines without warning such as choices Dairy Free Confectionary Chocolate Caramels 125g, only to restock them months later.
  5. Provide small cubicles with pet baskets, water and lockable doors for customers with dogs to place their beloved animal somewhere safe whilst they partake in brief shopping sessions.
  6. Provide nectar customers will free reusable key-ring bags, this will encourage valued customers to become nectar card holders, it will also enable the store to advertise the brand on the reusable keyring bags which I am sure they will use for other purposes besides carrying the supermarket’s products.

Thank-you for taking the time to read through this message, I hope you can provide me with the reusable key-ring bags as compensation for the horror I have experienced.

Best Wishes


6 Responses to “How Sainsburys caused a small tragedy”

  1. Mark Fuller Says:

    I’m presuming this is a joke. if not I do hope sainsburys pay you for your invaluable advice, have you thought about a career as a retail consoltuent?
    Keyring is one word, it’s not hyphenated.

  2. Lololol very funny.

    I did, however, feet the dramatic tension was reduced somewhat by the heading “My orange squash…”.

    Also, I now want to change my name to Ulysses Ronquillo.

  3. I actually had something fall out of my Tesco carrier bag just this last week. I had to retrace my steps to find one of things as it had fallen off the pavement onto the side of the road.

    Normally if I carry quite a heavy load I double the bags by just putting one inside the other.

    I never bother with store cards, I filled in a form once but it never arrived or worked.

    It can be difficult to find things in supermarkets particularly when they switch things around (for no other reason than change for the sake of it). Best thing to do is to have a map at the front of the store showing where things are, maybe with an index of goods as well.

    Hope you had a nice Christmas and New Year.

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