Thursday, April 14, 2011
Walmart announced this week that they are adding back 8500 products that were removed from shelves two years ago in a company wide reduction plan to cut costs. Since I am a Walmart shopper... we live right smack dab in the middle of Walmart country... it changed the way we ate. Shopping in a small town is dicey. Sometimes you can find products like sundried tomatoes or artichoke bruschetta, and sometimes you can't. If Walmart, Aldi or Harps doesn't carry it, you are out of luck. You didn't really want to make a Tuscan inspired dinner, did you???
Walmart lost a chunk of it's loyal base of customers when they were forced to go to other stores to buy products they had eliminated from their shelves. I was one of those. Not everyone loves Walmart, maybe what they dislike about the company is it's size or growth or strength. We went to church with Sam and Helen Walton years ago. The couple who dreamed big and grew Walmart from a meager Five and Dime store on Bentonville's square were as easy to talk to as your next door neighbor. They were honest, hard working people who gave back to their community. The company still gives back, if you don't want to believe this then don't Google "Walmart Contributions." Regardless, when I couldn't buy bean sprouts for my Pad Thai and salads, I went to Harps and while I was there I spent money on other things that Walmart no longer carried. A lot of people did the same thing. We all spent our hard earned bucks other places which helped Aldi to grow and Harps to thrive and Walmart lost customers and money. For 7 straight quarters, Walmart sales were down. The recession hit us all, even the big boys. But the American way is loss for some, growth for others. The American way also is when you can't find what you want, you figure out other ways. I learned how to grow my own sprouts and you know what, they taste even better than the little $1.44 package I used to get at Walmart!