For the past number of years, I had been unable to spend my summers in the Catskills, with work constraints forcing me to remain in the city. This year, for the first time in probably 25 years, I’m back in the Catskills, enjoying the relatively breezy weather. I’m happily stunned by the amenities that now exist in the once-backwards Catskills, but one thing seriously bothers me.
I haven’t done a scientific review of it, but it seems to me that many grocery store do not have prices listed! I’m not a multi-millionaire, and even if I were, I imagine I’d be careful about my spending. And when I or my husband have to go grocery shopping, we like checking the prices to inform us whether to purchase an item, and to ensure we know what the bill will be at the register.
But there are no prices to be found. If you’re in the mountains, check it out for yourself. Walk up and down the aisles at some of the major supermarkets,and you tell me how much a box of cereal costs. You won’t know until it’s too late. Need to buy cookies and nosh for the kids? Good luck knowing which ones fit within your budget.
Even putting aside spending budgets, why would stores not tell you what the price of an item is? I’m not a halachic authority, but wouldn’t that fall into the category of lifnei iver? You’re literally keeping people in the dark about what they will have to spend until it’s too late. And don’t tell me that you can just put the item back once it’s scanned at the register. You know it’s not practical.
I would like to see grocery stores in the mountains have a little more care, concern and respect for their customers by simply placing price labels on their products. Is that too much to ask for?
I think it’s time for the masses to boycott these stores once and for all and we should demand change.
My next letter will be about the literal robbery that some of these stores are doing. Everyone is entitled to make a Parnassah. No one is asking supermarket owners to be in the Tzedakah business. But the prices are simply outrageous, and it’s literally outright theft from the shoppers.
You store owners are all reading this. Every single one of you. And you should know that we are sick and tired of this behavior.
Sara Berger – South Fallsburg
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