via Couponers have until July 10 to get double value at Kroger | Consumer Watch, clarionledger.com, 7/1/2013.
If you do your grocery shopping at Kroger and you like to use manufacturer coupons because of the chain’s coupon-doubling program, you have just a few more days to take advantage of it. But a few shoppers aren’t taking the news lying down.
Stores in Kroger’s Memphis-based Delta Division (which includes Mississippi) will stop the doubling program on July 10, while hoping to alleviate the potential loss of goodwill by announcing lower prices on many items storewide. This is just the latest chapter in a chain-wide dropping of the doubling practice, and part of a major reshuffling of the company, including the addition of two new divisions in the Southeast announced last week.
Double couponing allows you to get twice the amount of manufacturers’ coupons, usually up to $1.00. Savvy consumers have found they can save big by timing their shopping with sales, sharing coupons with others and using coupons carefully. This has led to “extreme couponing”, in which proponents claim they get their groceries for free (some blame this practice in part for the decline in coupons you can actually use for something you need).
Kroger and other grocery industry leaders have cited low coupon use and high maintenance of couponing customers. Kroger’s Chief Financial Officer defended the decision in March, by calling the program a “very expensive reward proposition that a very small number of [our] customers actually engage in.” Consumers have noted that the value of coupons has been declining steadily in recent years, and so has the use of coupons.
But a group of zealous Kroger customers have started voicing their opposition to the news by starting a Facebook page called “Bring Back Doubles.” And a website called “buycott.com” has published lists of Kroger Division presidents to help consumers voice their opposition. Regardless, Kroger hasn’t yet reversed position; if you’ve been saving those coupons, you have another nine days to use them. The clock’s ticking.