A faulty inventory system at Whole Foods is leading to empty shelves at stores across the country, much to the annoyance of employees and customers alike.
According to Business Insider, the Amazon-owned grocery chain’s order-to-shelf system - which was implemented last year - is to blame. Described by Business Insider as a “tightly controlled system designed to streamline and track product purchases, displays, storage, and sales,” the system allows employees to essentially forgo stock rooms by carrying products directly from delivery trucks to shelves.
While it has helped reduce food spoilage and bring down costs, employees say the system’s strict procedures are what’s causing items to be out of stock.
Some customers have tweeted at the company in recent weeks to voice their complaints:
Once again your Upper East Side @WholeFoods is a failure. Sunday before a work week and your shelves and fish/meat counters are basically empty. Forget getting any fresh fruit or vegetable. This store is constantly a mess.
— Mike Korn (@MikeCheetos) January 7, 2018
What is with @wholefoods Tenleytown? It looks like the Soviet Safeway. Empty shelves everywhere. New ownership is not impressing.
— John Canon (@jofraca) January 5, 2018
@WholeFoods went to buy decaf beans at #squareone #Mississauga . Medium dark not available. Several others not available. Somebody is sleeping on the job. Came back empty-handed. Disappointing. @JeffBezos @amazon
— Import/export data (@dataone333) January 5, 2018
I went back to @WholeFoods today at 8am expecting bacon to be back as promised by the Associate Store Team Lead at the hot bar. An employee told me it was due to a “pig shortage”. Even a month later, there’s no bacon but CUTS OF HAM instead. What is this?? Lied to again. pic.twitter.com/CpP4RcSVvG
— Paul (@Ephedra007) December 29, 2017
Amazon purchased the Austin-based grocery retailer back in June for an estimated $13.7bn.