Wednesday, May 21, 2008

A Rant

Today I made what was supposed to be a quick trip to JoAnn Fabric and Crafts. When I walked in it was like a new world--they're in the midst of a store makeover; instead of open aisles, cutting table in the middle, etc., the store is filled with grocery store style shelves about eight feet high so that it's difficult to find anything. I'll keep an open mind about this; maybe it will be fine when finished. Apparently bigger stores in cities are going to this layout and we're just trying to keep current.

But here's the real point of this post: right by the door, extremely visible, (although most fabric is hidden), is a candy aisle: not just a little check-out lane candy display, but a full size, grocery store scale candy aisle. I know it's a free country and except for a few restrictions, merchandisers can sell whatever they want. But tell me one good reason why, in a country suffering from run away obesity, someone should be encouraged to buy candy on impulse when she shops for fabric and craft supplies. Recently I've noticed that all stores from hardware stores to big box electronic stores sell candy by the check out, so JoAnn's display shouldn't be surprising, but the scale and inappropriateness of it still shocked me. We all know how hard it is not to gain weight if you spend lots of time in a sedentary activity like sewing, and I don't want the temptation stuck in my face everywhere I go. Next time I go in, I'll say something to the manager, although I'm sure he will say it's a chain policy. What does anyone else think about this?

No I didn't buy any; I'd just come from the dentist. :)

15 comments:

StegArt said...

My Joann's has had a candy aisle right by the check out for a long time now. I think it's secret purpose is for those shoppers with children. Children see it as they wait in line and start nagging to get something. If they kept thread spools and notions along the check out line, what child would nag? And then they couldn't sell the extra $$$$.

Elaine Adair said...

I think it is a marketing trick to encourage young women, maybe with kids, to stay in the store a bit longer. I am shocked to see how many of even the young mothers are already so plump! OK, I am also plump, but not when I was that age.

I am so cynical, and believe NOTHING is what it seems, in this money hungry world. THe manufacturers (big money) have the $ to find out what makes us tick psychologically, and what will keep customers in the store longer, etc. But the high shelves? That will be interesting to note next time I visit JoAnns.

The Calico Cat said...

I have to admit that I purchased candy at Joanns (with a coupon). In my defense, it was a gift for my husband (who doesn't need it either).

Karen Dianne Lee said...

I think score another one for MS! Its too hard to get out to those big stores so I avoid them. This goes on my list of BENE's for having MS and I ain't kidding.

*karendianne who desperately hopes everyone will take this in the jovial spirit it is intended.

(ps: unfortunately they have power scooters at the grocery store and I can reach the ice cream.)

...fatty mcbutterpants love, *kd.

paulahewitt said...

This is dreadful - I am assuming Joanns is a dedicated fabric store, rather than variety store? I sometimes buy fabric at a liquidators, who have a whole range of items, often including lollies (candy) - even though the kids know better than to nag me at the supermarket - if i take them there they know Im buying stuff for me, and have no compuntion in demanding lollies ('but you are getting a treat, why cant we?)- if they sold high end chocs we'd all be lost! the kids wont even go into a normal quilt store - too boring - but the lure of lollies would work - so maybe that is Joanns aim. not very nice

dee said...

Everytime I go to JoAnn's they have the candy right by the register and there are always screaming kids. It's mean and I agree with the woman above regarding weight. I was very slim in my early mothering years-now I'm what's called zaftig but I didn't get this way until I was past 50. Women today have enough challenges raising kids they don't need more crap thrown in their way. So many of the young Moms I see are already really heavy. It's awful for them and their kids and this product placement is just trouble waiting to happen.

Sue said...

You are sooooo right to rant. We eat too much rubbish as it is. What will it be next? Girlie mags for the boys?

Zegi said...

It annoys me greatly because my kids are always clamoring for it when we check out. It's hard enough at the grocery store, with a little tiny display of candy...at J's it is just overwhelming. It actually keeps me from going there because I don't like going in with my kids.

jenclair said...

Our JoAnn's has a small candy rack, but I almost never notice it. Still, I agree with you and wish that stores would be more socially responsible in many ways. Including fewer plastic bags... Socially responsible stores encourage socially responsible patrons which is better than the other way around.

Rian said...

I'm with ya on the inappropriateness of a candy department in the fabric store. We quilters (and we Americans in general!) tend to be too "hefty" anyway. Candy. Pffft. But don't get me started...

Allison Ann Aller said...

I think most Americans are so used to processed, insulin level spiking/crashing foods....that your typical shopper is going to want that sugar rush by the time she checks out of the store.
So this is not just aimed at the kids...it's feeding the white flour/white sugar habit we all have.

Thanks for the rant...this is an important issue.

Amy a.k.a. dragonryder4 said...

Ugg I totaly agree. I'm a mom of 4 and the grocery stores are hard enough to deal with but I about fliped the last time I went in to JoAnn's and my kids saw all the candy. I'm pretty good about staying away from the stuff myself but man I feel really mean when my kids are begging for the junk and I have to tell them no !

jettstream said...

I detest Jo-Ann's "new look" and especially the maze check-out where I'm forced to browse candy bars. I confess to buying a Payday once when I didn't have time for lunch, but it would be a nightmare with kids along. It would sure curtail my shopping with the kiddies, but the lousy new lay-out, reduced home dec section, and hidden cutting tables have already done that.

I rarely go in there any more and try to buy only at local quilt shops, because I fear they won't make it without us and then all we'll have left IS Jo-Ann's. Rant over.

LynnS said...

Your rant is well said! I don't shop at JoAnn's so their new marketing scheme doesn't affect me. Knowing that most stores have the lures of impulse items, parents with kids can plan ahead and bring a small reward with them into the stores. Their reward can be given to their child at the time of the check-out, instead of having to cave in for those impulse items. When my boys were young, I taught them that a cone of ice cream sold at the summer-stand was the same as a big half-gallon of ice cream sold at the grocery store. I gave them their choice -- their choice was the half gallon. Who says kids aren't smart? LOL

Evelyn aka Starfishy said...

I hear you! My son just turned 5 and believe me - this candy stuff is in every store! Lets not even start on the sugar cereals that are child eye-level in the grocery stores. We talk about it before we even go inside, shop with a list in hand, and I never ever change my mind once I say no. Being prepared for it seems to help.

Cheers!
Evelyn