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Costco Shoppers "Hate Everything About" New Product Packaging

The retailer is facing backlash after changing one of its most popular items.

Despite Costco's cult of loyal followers, when customers are unhappy with the wholesale retailer, they're not afraid to speak out. Recently, Costco shoppers called out the company over the quantity of certain seasonings and the quality of its store-brand food. And now, they've turned their frustrations to the new packaging of one of Costco's most popular products.

RELATED: Costco Shoppers Are Abandoning These Kirkland Products: "Gone Downhill."

At just $4.99, Costco's rotisserie chickens have long been a viral superstar for the company. During a meeting at the beginning of this year, Costco's new CEO Ron Vachris told shareholders that the retailer sold 137 million rotisserie chickens during the 2023 fiscal year, The Seattle Times reported. That's 20 million more than they sold during the prior fiscal year.

"Our service deli had a very strong year," Vachris told investors at the time.

But a recent change could affect how well the chickens sell this year. Back in March, shoppers noticed that Costco's rotisserie chickens were being sold in new plastic bags at some stores instead of the clear plastic containers they had been using, reported Eat This, Not That!

According to the news outlet, a now-deleted Reddit post claimed an internal memo from the company indicated that the new bags are more environmentally friendly because they use 75 percent less plastic than the containers. The memo also reportedly assured that the rotisserie chickens would still have the "same product quality" despite the switch.

It seems some shoppers are starting to disagree, however.

"Dear Costco," one customer wrote in a June 11 X post. "You new rotisserie chicken bags and the chicken inside them is nowhere near what they used to be."

Another X user expressed a similar sentiment in a June 7 post: "Costco rotisserie chicken doesn't seem to taste as good now that they put them in bags."

RELATED: Costco Shopper Says She Found Parasites in Kirkland Salmon: "Traumatized."

But shoppers aren't only sour over the supposed drop in quality; some also complain that the new packaging presents another major problem.

"These new bags leak," Reddit user @Bozerks wrote in a recent post on the r/Costco subreddit. "Chicken juice spilled all over the trunk of our car."

After asking if anyone else had experienced this same issue, many chimed in with their own frustrations.

"I recently grabbed two chickens in the bag for the first time. Hated everything about it," one Reddit user commented on the thread. "The bags were slick with juice on the display (we had to wait for them, so it was from the staff just prepping them), so my hands were then covered in grease with no paper towels anywhere. Putting them on the belt for checkout got chicken grease on that, too. They were just slick and nasty."

They added, "I understand being more environmentally conscious but honestly it was so bad it will make me question whether I really want to get any more of these things and deal with that experience all over again."

Another user claimed they have even talked to Costco workers who are against the packaging change. "They are spilling in peoples carts and on the checkout counters all day long. The employees all hate the new bags and there is hope that Costco will find a way to address the issue," they replied.

In a separate June 15 Reddit thread, one user shared an article from Costco's member magazine that confirmed the switch was made for environmental reasons. "Based on projected rotisserie chicken sales in 2024 in the U.S., the new packaging will save an estimated 17 million pounds of plastic every year," the article reads.

But still, some shoppers are asking Costco to consider alternative options because they dislike the new bags so much.

"Dear @Costco while I understand why you switched, I really don't like the new packaging for the rotisserie chicken," one shopper wrote in a June 16 X post. "It's difficult to get to/cut and precarious in the fridge. Can you please offer a reusable container for sale? I would happily purchase."

Best Life has reached out to Costco about the complaints, and we will update this story with their response.

Kali Coleman
Kali Coleman is a Senior Editor at Best Life. Her primary focus is covering news, where she often keeps readers informed on the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and up-to-date on the latest retail closures. Read more
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