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Local grocery store responds after accusations of price-gouging surface on social media

Updated: Mar 27, 2020

- Royal City, WA

A local grocery store responded Friday afternoon after accusations surfaced that the store was price-gouging toilet paper.

In a post on Facebook, David De La Rosa posted a picture of individual rolls of toilet paper that were being sold for $2.49 each at the Harvest Foods in Royal City.

Packages of toilet paper which were opened up and on sale for a cool price of $2.49 for an Individual roll,” De La Rosa stated.

The post gained momentum within minutes, with a flock of comments condemning the store for selling the rolls of toilet paper for a higher price. Some suggested filing a complaint with the Washington State Attorney General’s Office for price-gouging during the COVID-19 pandemic going on across the country.

Roughly an hour after De La Rosa’s post went up, the Royal City Harvest Facebook Page responded to the claims of price-gouging:

Hi harvest food customers. We have a situation here. We're getting blamed for gouging. That's not our intention. We were over ordered over a hundred cases of toilet paper to take care of the needs of our customers. For this to get from now to Wednesday, we received 10 cases. We had to make a decision. We can't stand here and try to make sure everybody is reasonable. So we priced each one, each roll. We're trying to spread it out to as many people as possible so that they wouldn't feel like they didn't have any. We had some at $2.49 we had some at $1.49, the point for us is not to make an extra hundred bucks. The point is to make sure people decide whether they really need toilet paper or not. And the people would say, ‘no, I don't need toilet paper yet. I can use the three cases that I bought last week’,” the Harvest Foods employee said.

He continued, “Okay, we put these limits in place because we want all customers to have a solution. So now all this will be in the back and nobody will get it unless they're in dire need. And if you really need it, you can ask and we will give you a roll. And you can have it for free is never about the money. We are here to serve the community. And so that's how supply and demand for those that don't understand, when we get a full supply, the prices will go back to normal and there will be no limits. And we are assured that that will happen. But all the systems are stretched to the limit right now. And when the supply comes back, you can expect things to go back as they always have at harvest food fair, prices, quality, and with a smile. So come shop at harvest foods. Thank you,” he added.
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