The spread of the coronavirus (COVID-2019) has led to some people stocking up on food and supplies, but one Facebook user claims more and more people are returning items they don’t need back to stores such as Costco.
While there is “NO global shortage of Jasmine rice from Thailand, NO shortage of faux Japanese rice like ‘Botan, Nishiki or Kokuho’ rice,” Facebook user Ebereto Chan claims a Costco Business Center in Hayward, California saw a line of people returning “10 x 50lbs bags of rice.”
“Costco doesn’t re-stock food items. Instead, they throw them into the dumpster and it’s the vendor that has to eat it,” Chan further claims.
Produce and other foods can be returned, opened or unopened, to your local Costco, according to Rather-Be-Shopping.
“Just be aware that Costco is tracking all of your returns and if they think you’re abusing the return policy they might flag your account,” the post said. “Bottomline: Don’t abuse the Costco return policy as it’ll eventually go away, and hurt all members, if more and more folks abuse it.”
NextShark called Hayward Costco Warehouse to verify claims of food returns at their store and a general manager, who went by Randall, says they are not aware of any returns.
“We haven’t gotten any returns,” he said. “When [the rice] is opened, we usually donate them to food shelters.”
Randall added that there is also a current limit of two bags per person.
FOX 26 Houston reported that Costco has now limited purchases to two cases per person for water, rice, and toilet paper and disinfectant wipes.
Muriel Cooper, Corporate Communications for Costco, said the company has received several media inquiries to find out more about how it is handling the increased demand for emergency supplies.
“As you can imagine, Costco has received several requests from the media for more information about how Costco is handling the surge of interest in purchasing emergency supplies in response to news on the coronavirus,” she said in an email. “Costco is not staffed to respond individually to all these questions.”
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