Like Coke versus Pepsi or McDonald's versus Burger King, some business battles will be waged forever. After all, people have strong opinions about what they put in their pie-hole.
The same goes for supermarkets. Some people are die-hard Whole Foods junkies; others (as former Northeasterners know) swear by Wegman's. But yesterday one BuzzFeed contributor made the case that Miami's most ubiquitous corporate chain, Publix, is in fact, the "best grocery store to ever exist."
Here at Short Order, we're cynics, and despite the stores' virtues (we admit, their cookies pretty much melt in your mouth), we can't jive with the whole sunshine and lollipops perspective. In our opinion, they still have some work to do, and here are five reasons why.
Because nobody's perfect, not even Publix.
My own personal hell.
Google Street View
5. The 2270 SW 27th Avenue Location
Between the wandering fools cruising the parking lot and the claustrophobia-inducing aisles at the 27th Avenue outpost -- you may as well be shopping in Manhattan. No. Thank. You. (Yeah, this is a personal gripe from the writer, who happens to live in that general vicinity -- nonetheless, one bad apple can spoil the whole bunch. Hence why I shop at Winn-Dixie.)
Seafood, it has consequences.
4. According to Greenpeace, Their Seafood Practices Suck
In a recent study by the environmental watchdogs, Publix seafood practices scored a miserable 2.7 out of 10. That's dismal by 7-Eleven standards. They were ranked 19 out of 20 chains analyzed. Red Lobster and Japanese whalers are doing just fine destroying our oceans -- they don't need Publix joining in the fun.
3. Cheesy Commercials.
Who wants to cry at a grocery store commercial? Seriously? Don't we get enough of that from the ASPCA? Yeah, we know, everyone loves their cutesy Thanksgiving salt and pepper shakers, but are we the only ones who like a little realism when it comes to dysfunctional family holiday time? Even Publix baked goods won't save our f***ed up families.
2. Shopping Is Never a Pleasure. Don't Lie To Us.
Despite claims that their employees are all rosy-cheeked and of sunny dispositions, we've seen plenty of the alternative. Besides, fighting crowds, desperately seeking produce that doesn't exist, dealing with slow shoppers (we're talking to you, old lady writing a check) and shelling out an increasing percentage of your paycheck as the price of groceries skyrockets isn't a pleasure. It basically sucks. Even when good cookies are involved.
1. They Don't Think Tomato Workers Deserve a One-Penny Raise
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The Coalition of Immokalee Workers has been fighting since 2010 to improve conditions for Florida's tomato workers. Their Fair Food agreement would insure a one-penny-per-pound wage increase and some basic human rights, but despite protests, Publix doesn't want to get on board. To be fair, neither do the other major grocery chains, but Trader Joe's, Chipotle, Whole Foods and others have (eventually) stepped up in support. Publix generates $27 billion in sales per year. Somehow, we think they can swing it.
Follow Hannah on Twitter @hannahalexs.