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What's up with all the "natural flavoring" and 12% or more salt water in meats?
Posted by Davi on 11/30/2009
LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY -- My local Kroger has great employees and good service, however, the meats seem to be becoming saltier and many are injected with substances vaguely explained in tiny letters on the packaging.
Today I went in to buy some form of lean ground beef--round, sirloin, or chuck and noticed the "natural flavoring" reference, a salt content reference, and no ingredient list. So what is the "natural flavoring"? Needless to say, I bought none. No one in the store could explain the label.
Is the "natural flavoring" MSG? I have a friend who is very allergic to that. Is it salt? Many people are on low salt diets and unknowingly buy "moist and tender" pork, chicken and turkey shot with salty "broth" and whatever else.
A really good cook recently was complaining that she used to marinate pork loin and it was wonderful, but now it just never tastes right. I asked her where she bought her pork, and indeed it was Kroger's "moist and tender".
Since many people are on salt-restricted diets, Kroger needs to come clean about ADDED salt, any tenderizers, the 12% and up "broth" added to meats and poultry which is not in teeny tiny writing which most consumers do not see and of which they are unaware.
Kroger is not the only grocery chain doing this; Tyson chickens are everywhere and they're doctored; Butterball too. But Kroger is making it very hard to find meat that is simply meat in their stores.
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Posted by Anonymous on 2009-11-30:
I've never been to a Kroger. I'm moving from Chicago to Atlanta in two months. Am I in for a rude awakening?
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-11-30:
We have Fry's here which sells Kroger brands. I'll have to see if it's the same at Fry's next time I go
Posted by jktshff1 on 2009-11-30:
Chikago to 'Hot Lanta, boy, you are in for a very rude awakening.........
Posted by CrazyRedHead on 2009-12-01:
Locate yourself a butcher. Also be careful of the meats that are injected, I found the sharp end of a hypodermic needle in the middle of a big roast one night after cooking it.
Posted by Natural Flavor supplier on 2010-02-03:
The natural flavor on the label is natural rosemary extract. It's widely by all major meat supplers used to extend the color shelf life of fresh ground beef. Keeps that ground beef from turning brown so quickly.
Posted by Yeah Right! on 2012-01-07:
If it were just "natural rosemary extract" why wouldn't it simply be labeled as such. Most "natural flavor"ings are flavor enhancers and hopefully we all know what that means! I'd trust Mr. Natural Flavor Supplier about as far as I could throw him. No MSG for me Mr. Ajinomoto. You're making americans fat and sick. Very Sick.
Posted by The Customer on 2013-07-22:
I totally agree with" yeah right".
I can't stand Kroger, the kroger near me is disgusting, if you smell rotting fish and meat as you walk in the store "red flag" get the heck out!
Posted by AZcustomer on 2013-08-19:
According to the FDA, natural flavorings can include spices and organic materials including saw dust (I am totally serious!). Since wood chips are organic they can be considered natural for food purposes and Kroger does not have to list this as an ingredient in their meat. Steer clear of Kroger meat products, I do.
Posted by Sick of being deceived on 2013-09-03:
My wife bought a pack of innocent-looking ground beef patties last night from Kroger. They were labeled "Homestyle Beef Patties" 80% lean 20% fat ground chuck. She thought they were a bargain because they were 10 patties for $10. We thought they were just 100% ground beef like we have bought for years, just convienently already formed into patties. They were non frozen in a clear shrink wrapped package. A stamp said "product of USA and Canada. First of all when I grilled them, I was shocked at how much they shrunk! That tells you how much fat and water were in them. I joked that we would be having "sliders" tonight instead of full size hamburgers. I ended up eating two since they were so small. In the middle of the night, I woke up with a horrible pain in my stomach and terrible acid reflux. This rarely ever happens to me unless I accidentally eat something with MSG in it (monosodium glutumate). I ended up being up all night terribly sick. First thing this morning, I read the labels of everything I ate. What could have caused such a reaction. Then there it was, in tiny little print on the back of the ground beef package. I almost missed it. Ingredients
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Denied $20 Discount
Posted by Sarp23 on 03/02/2008
CARROLLTON, GEORGIA -- I recently received a mailing from Kroger Atlanta with a message from Bruce Lucia describing me as one of their very best customers and including a number of coupons “chosen especially for me”. One of these was a coupon that gave $20 off groceries for each new prescription brought to the Kroger pharmacy. What a contrast with the service I received at the Carrollton, GA Kroger store on 3/1/08 from Allyson Tant (Manager on Duty around 6:30 pm).

On Feb 29th I brought two prescriptions to the pharmacy along with the coupon which should have entitled me to two $20 off coupons for my next shopping trips. The woman who rang it up scanned it all correctly, noted on my coupon that I had used 2 of the 3 available offers for $20 each and informed me it would take about 20 minutes to load onto my Kroger card instead of giving me a gift card or paper coupon. I returned the next day under the assumption that I would have $20 available on my Kroger card to apply to my purchase. I spent about an hour shopping, totaled my purchase and was told by the cashier that nothing was coming up on my card. She called over the manager, Ms. Tant, who tried to call some office that was closed and then said I was basically out of luck, there was nothing she could do.

I explained that I would not have done a big shopping trip at Kroger that day had I not been told yesterday that I would have $20 available within 20 minutes and that this was clearly Kroger's error. The only solution she offered was to void my transaction (after I had spent an hour shopping!). When I said again that I thought it was very poor customer service to basically imply I was lying (I had my Kroger card and pharmacy coupon that had been noted on by the cashier yesterday and she could have just checked with the pharmacy!) and refuse to honor the $20. Her response was that she wouldn't know what to say to risk management. How about that you give good customer service?? At this point she just walked off. I was not given any information about how to redeem the $20, a customer service number to call or anything. I noticed as I was leaving that she was just leaning against the customer service desk with another employee pointing me out and glaring at me. Like I had done something wrong my asking for the discount they offered me!

It seems obvious to me that good customer service would simply have been to check with the pharmacy, confirm the prescriptions and err in the customer's favor. I am now out $20 I should have been able to save on these groceries, that counts for a lot for a family on a budget. I am usually happy with Kroger and feel the give me a good value, but I am now reluctant to return except that your store owes me $40 in groceries for the two prescriptions but I have no idea how to ever recover it because I no longer trust your company to give decent customer service. If Ms. Tant was giving the type of customer service they endorse than I will just shop elsewhere from now on.
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Posted by Principissa on 2008-03-02:
You aren't out 20.00 because it wasn't your 20.00 to begin with. It was Kroger's. Today is Sunday and the office that handles these things is closed today. It is possible that since you got the offer on a Saturday that it could take 2 business days to process, especially since the office that takes care of it is closed today. I'm not accusing you of any wrong doing, but what if you initialed the coupons and not the pharmacy and they gave you that 20.00? The manager would take the heat for that. I don't think this was bad customer service I think this was the manager following the policies.
Posted by tnchuck100 on 2008-03-02:
1. Let them restock the groceries.
2. Retrieve your prescriptions from the pharmacy and go elsewhere.
3. Thank Ms. Tant for the outstanding customer service.
4. Apologize for bothering them.
5. Return the coupons to Bruce Lucia. Tell him they were invalid.
Posted by Anonymous on 2008-03-02:
You could have just had them restock $20 worth of groceries until the matter is resolved??
Posted by hello dolly on 2008-03-02:
While it is regrettable that Ms Tant was unable to provide you with the $20 you felt entitled to how is that BAD service? Really? I just don't get it she can't give you something not able to be verified and she gives bad service? How does that add up to bad service?

By the way it sounds like you shop at Kroger pretty frequently can't you use the discount on your next purchase? Or would you have us all believe you decided to buy groceries this week because you were getting a $20 discount?

Posted by tnchuck100 on 2008-03-02:
I think the main problem here is Kroger corporate is issuing coupons that their stores are not authorized to honor. Kroger's integrity just went down the toilet.
Posted by fascismsux on 2008-03-02:
I just got a thing in the mail from OVEC (ohio valley environmental coalition) You mail it in along with $20.00 and ya get a shopping card to take to kroger . If ya use the card at kroger , 5% goes to ovec to help fight Mountain Range removal ! Yay for kroger! Vote with your money ,cuz , thats the only vote ya really got !
Posted by phirerednga on 2008-03-23:
I too live in Carrollton and had the very same problem with a prescription transfer (our coupon came out of the paper). We came back the next day to do more shopping and again the 20 dollars was not on our card. At that point we asked for the manager to be called to the front, unlike the poster, he had the cashier take 20 dollars off our grocery order. It was frustrating and time consuming. If ever we get the prescription offer again, I will ask at that time for the manager to be called and take care of it before I leave the pharmacy.
Posted by Briansmith on 2008-04-28:
Sounds like you had this all planed to come on the weekend to get free stuff. I am sure you have done this other places as well to get free stuff. People like you make it hard for "good" shoppers to take advantage of deals.
Posted by heykeri on 2008-07-05:
i work at kroger in carrollton, that's why we got rid of mrs. tant. :) she was a horrible manager, and had no respect for the customer.
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I Love This Kroger!
Posted by JoanDenson on 03/14/2013
DOUGLASVILLE, GEORGIA -- Every time I come into this store everyone is so kind and helpful. Today which is my favorite day because it is Senior Citizen discount day and not a lot of stores offer that. I was having trouble finding an item that I usually get on a regular basis and I ask a young lady to help my find it while she was in the middle of stocking the shelf, I can't remember her name but she had really short hair and glasses, it was around 3 p. m., She went out of her why to go into the back of the store and try to locate the item, I was about to loose hope because she was gone for a few minutes, but low and behold she returned with them item. I did expect her to come back at all because most young kids today don't care about the customers that much. She asked me if there was anything unless I needed help with and I told her no I think I have found everything else I was shopping for and I told her thank you and she replied My pleasure which really put the icing on the cake for me.

She was just a pleasant young lady. I definitely will return to this Kroger because of the experience today.
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Posted by Alain on 2013-03-14:
One good employee can make a real difference. Thanks for the review!
Posted by yoke on 2013-03-14:
Excellent review, thank you
Posted by Skye on 2013-03-14:
Great review!!!!! Thank you for taking the time to share your story with us.
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Bad Meat Again!!!
Posted by Mot on 09/04/2009
Several time I have purchased bad ground beef from Kroger. I stopped buying ground beef and started using ground turkey because I had so many bad experiences with beef. Recently, I purchased some pork chops on my way home, at a store that was not in my neighborhood. We got home and as I was putting up the groceries a rancid smell hit me. I picked up the pork chops and you could smell them through the plastic wrap. I took my receipt and the meat to my neighborhood Kroger. The person at the customer service center call the manager who proceeded to tell me that I should take the meat back to the Kroger where I purchased it. I said thats across town and I am not driving all the way over there with this rotten meat in my car. She said she would handle it this time but gave me the speech on how her store was taking the loss for another store.
I feel that as a chain store, you should be able to go to any Kroger to return a bad product. What if the product was purchased in another city?

With todays technology you should be able to key in from which store the product was purchased. I had my receipt with me so it shouldn't have been a problem.

I also noted the addition of the up to 12% solution added to the meat recently and have decided I will not be buying much meat at Kroger in the future.

Their product quality is going down and so is their customer service.
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Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
If I continually picked up bad meat, I believe I'd change where I shopped for my bare necessities.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
Where is this Kroger located?
Posted by Eloise on 2009-09-04:
Just a note. When you over grill Ground Turkey it releases carcinogenic chemicals that can be quite dangerous. Just trying to keep M3C healthy.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
Please cite your source, Eloise.
Posted by Eloise on 2009-09-04:
I read it in a diet book, but it was also posted in USA Today Weekend. The book said if you topped the burger with coleslaw it reduced the effect greatly.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
Sure you're not jerking me around, Eloise? :)
Posted by Eloise on 2009-09-04:
Promise, I woudn't do that to you.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
I seem to remember years ago reading that nearly about *anything* being overgrilled can contain carcinogens. Not sure I buy it, though.

Then again, I wouldn't eat anything 'well-done'.

Posted by madconsumer on 2009-09-04:
if she was c2o, you would enjoy it!
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
I quit buying ground beef years ago. It was so consistently spoiled, it was like throwing money away.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
You can break that promise Eloise, if you'd like.
Posted by Eloise on 2009-09-04:
Well Done? Yuck, there is nothing left of the meat at that point.
Posted by Eloise on 2009-09-04:
Sorry C2O a promise is a promise!
Posted by madconsumer on 2009-09-04:
eloise make sure to wear rubber gloves!!
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
But a broken promise is a party. Dang the luck!
Posted by madconsumer on 2009-09-04:
a well done steak can be well done!
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
There will be no well done meat hitting my palate!

Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
I doubt meat loaf would be hitting hit either.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
Meatloaf, prepared properly, is A-OK.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
But does it please your palate?
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
Sweet, salty, tangy, in a delicious sauce would be the bomb.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-04:
You just said a mouthful!
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-05:
I almost never buy ground beef anymore. For my stews, hamburger helper, goulash, etc. I almost always use lean ground pork. Much more flavour and slightly less expensive.
Posted by Alain on 2009-09-05:
No Krogers around here, but if I'm in a town with one I think I'll patronize another store.
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-05:
If your'e near a Wegman's be sure to pop in to one of those. They're the best.
Posted by Alain on 2009-09-05:
My brother in Princeton has a Wegman's near him. I really love the place! We use Giant Eagle here (Pittsburgh). Haven't had any problems with them and reasonable pricing as well.
Posted by i_am_canadian on 2009-09-05:
And if you ever come to Canada, be sure to visit a Loblaws. It's like our version of Wegman's.
Posted by Alain on 2009-09-05:
Thanks! I will! Speaking of shopping, it's time to make my weekly run. I like doing it on a Saturday morning since there's seldom a crowd at this hour. Gives me a chance to talk to the employees as well. They can tell me what's fresh at the bakery, produce, etc. when they aren't busy.
Posted by Eloise on 2009-09-05:
I visited a Wegman's and it was like going to an amusement park for foodies.

Miss M, do you have to request the ground pork? I've never seen it out.
Posted by madconsumer on 2009-09-05:
ew pork .....
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-09-05:
Eloise, the stores I shop at carry ground pork.
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Insults at Starbucks in the King Sooper (Kroger) store
Posted by Gpreichel on 01/20/2014
CO SPRINGS, COLORADO -- I was just told by the West Uintah Co Springs Co Kroger - King Sooper Starbucks manager that older people are more likely prone to be violent than younger people- I had just related discomfort with a person in the store who has done some very unacceptable behavior at my apt building. This mgr and an employee were just leaning on the counters swapping stories when I asked for water and related my feelings. The attitude was we don't have time to listen- there were no others in line - Well, I am past 70 yrs old now and took the manager's remark as a personal insult- I ask myself why do I put up with that??!! Is there a more polite place I can go for a table and pleasant environment??? How about Wendys folks!
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Posted by FoDaddy19 on 2014-01-21:
You interjected yourself into their conversation, by doing so you are inviting their opinions. Not everyone is going to hold the opinions as you. If you were not willing to hear anything you didn't want to hear, then you probably shouldn't have interjected yourself into their conversation.
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Posted by Wanstacy on 01/08/2014
Bought a table which was on sale for $39.99. All the parts were not there.
Tried to take it back and they said I had to contact company. Tried for an hour and gave up. Not much patience at 72 yrs of age. It all went into
dumpster! Got a better table at Wal-Mart for $30.00. I am a loyal
Kroger customer! Will not purchase nothing but food products from
Kroger from now on!
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Kroger Does Not Honor Money Orders They Sell!
Posted by Lmchenko2 on 12/12/2013
WOW- I was given a money order bought from Kroger - I tried to use it at a Kroger and was told that they will not accept it, that policy says that I would have to go to the Kroger where it was purchased....Wouldn't you think that they would honor their own product! NO WAY will never accept a money order bought from Kroger ever again.. Best for everyone to go elsewhere for money orders
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Krogers Is Adding Water A Lot To Their Beef
Posted by Janmas on 11/03/2013
DALTON, GEORGIA -- A few years ago I purchased a large package of what was suppose to be quality ground Chuck at Krogers and when I opened the package up and removed the meat, there was a "Red Plastic wrapper" that had been cut in half and you couldn't see the package until you turned the meat over. This was a package of the cheapest ground beef that you can buy cut in half. Krogers meat dept had forgotten to throw the wrapper away before repacking it in their own meat dept wrapper and was selling it for quality Ground Chuck!! I swore that I would never buy meat from them again.

Well, this weekend, I broke my rule and bought an expensive SIRLOIN TIP ROAST from them. It weighed 4 lb and when it was cooked in the crock pot for about 4 hrs, it had already shrunk to about 2 lb!! THEY HAVE GOT TO BE ADDING A TON OF WATER TO THEIR MEAT and this time, I WILL NEVER BUY FROM THEM AGAIN!!!
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Poor Customer Service
Posted by LC1114 on 10/15/2013
HENDERSON, NEVADA -- 3 months ago I asked a store manager to add a product to the store. He refused so I contacted a local dist, manager he said he would look into it (MARCO). He worked through a Regional Brand Manager Gary [snip] who told me after 3 month they would get me some product only to lose it in a warehouse. He refused my calls for over a week and then insulted me. I also consulted Kroger's customer service # only to also leave frustrated at how poorly trained they are in customer service issues. By the way the product I asked added is a product that is Kroger owned. Seems like a no brainer!
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Posted by Slimjim on 2013-10-16:
I'm not agreeing you have the buying power or jurisdiction to tell them what to stock outside of a suggestion.
Posted by FoDaddy19 on 2013-10-16:
Stores tend to stock what sells. And often there are minimum orders. So if the wholesaler says "You need to order 300 of these before I'll sell them to your" and the store owner only has demand for 15 of the item, then obvously it would be foolish for them for place an order. Then you get into the logtistical issues of Shelf/floorspace, displacing other products whose manufacterer may have paid for certain shelf/floor space, and what do to when you're stuck with X amount of this product that doesn't sell well. (If it did sell well they would already be selling it).Often times request like these aren't worth the hassle on the store's end.

I think you're oversimplfying the situation. And I think you may be overestimating the amount of influence you think you have.
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Rude Employees, Poor Management to Boot
Posted by Echad25 on 10/06/2013
this is how i feel.
this is how i feel.
LAGRANGE, GEORGIA -- I have been shopping here for years, I enjoy the fuel points that you earn and use them frequently. Me and my family (husband 2 young sons) were getting gas. The attendant was angry because she was having to clean a gas spill at the next pump. When my boyfriend was standing at the kiosk waiting to pay she glared and him and shouted that she would be right there very angrily. She was curt and rude, and following him to the pump informed him to turn off the car when we were pumping our gas. Ok for ANYONE that has ever kept their car going, forgot to discharge static electricity or have been talking on their cell phone while getting gas, keep your comments to yourself you are no better than I.

I have seen COUNTLESS people not follow these rules and nothing is said to them. This girl was in a bad mood and felt like being bossy. My children were in the car, and it was a very hot day. So when we didn't comply, she turned off the pump, and as we drove away proceeded to shoot us a bird. this is the kind of trash that Kroger employs, and then refuses to take any action against them, even though she is clearly shooting a bird at customers on camera.

The manager at this particular store is careless and lazy. He has since went on vacation before resolving the issue, and has this same cow running the customer service desk. Despicable.
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Posted by CU on 2013-10-06:
No disrespect, but when you failed to comply with her request AND the law, it's disengenuous for you to complain about her.
Posted by nikalseyn on 2013-10-06:
Contact Kroger corporate. They have a website that lists both an email form or, better yet a phone number to call. They need to know about this location's employee problems.
Posted by trmn8r on 2013-10-06:
Did you look at this from the attendant's point of view? The attendant was in a bad mood because someone spilled gas - that isn't surprising, but that doesn't give them an excuse to be rude.

Now they are dealing with that, and someone is filling their tank while the engine is running. I have to say, I have never witnessed that in 36 years of driving and getting gas.

I can understand the attendant to be upset about leaving the car running while fueling, and to say something about it, if that is what happened. If you choose to ignore such a request, that business can *require* that you no longer shop there. Insisting you leave the car running so the little ones can stay cool and comfortable like they are at home in the living room is, well, it is selfish and endangers not only them but everyone else and any nearby property.
Posted by ontario_girl on 2013-10-06:
When I worked at a gas station, if someone failed to comply with these rules, we were required to halt the pump. ESPECIALLY after I asked them to turn off the vehicle. You were asked to do something and ignored the request. Personally, I find that rude. I would rather my children be hot for the few minutes it takes to fuel up a vehicle, rather than igniting static electricity and being blown sky high.
Posted by Popcorn on 2013-10-07:
Your husband put the safety of the employee, other customers, and Your Children in danger. They had every right to act that way. These rules are not to inconvenience you, but brought about by previous accidents where there was a loss of life.
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