How to: Make a Pretentious Product Complaint.

Yesterday, a heinous tragedy did befall our heroine!  The long and arduous road trip from Rowany Festival to BrisVegas is the one time each year when gobbling down on sugary confectionary, not only seems appropriate but becomes absolutely compulsory!  As an integral part of the long distance travel experience, one inevitably finds oneself getting tired and lacking in energy; and whether driver or passenger, it’s important to well, you know… stay awake!  For a non-caffeine consumer, this often involves copious quantities of sugar, which does indeed aid considerably in this endeavour.  After years of trial and error, it has played out that Allen’s Snakes Alive provide the sugar high of choice, and have become one of our favourite road trip necessities.

consumer complaint no yellow snakes red preference lollies

Unfortunately, this year there have been mysterious and malignant forces at work at the Nestle plant where the Allen’s Snakes Alive are manufactured resulting in the following Incident that will long be etched in the memory …

Unto the manufacturers, distributors and purveyors of the most excellent Allen’s Snakes Alive does Ms Borys of Azerbaijan, send greetings and salutations.  I pray you excuse the lamentous tone of this communication but I am compelled to write to inform you of our recent Great and Frightful Yellow Snake Incident.  

I was excessively disappointed this long weekend when, upon delving into my favourite road trip confection, I discovered to my dismay a complete absence of yellow snakes! The yellow snake of course, being the preferred snake of Allen’s Snakes Alive connoisseurs the country over. 

I duly checked the packaging to ensure that I hadn’t inadvertently chosen a product that was deliberately sans yellow snakes and found the requisite colour and flavour ingredients listed on the packaging, which further escalated confusion and increased my discombobulation and emotional disquiet.

As I watched my travel companion joyfully devour their favourite red and orange varieties (such plebeian palettes you’ve never encountered!), it required all the restraint and composure I could muster not to weep tears of sadness! As such, I immediately resolved to inform your good selves of this gross oversight which I feel must be the result of an egregious failure of what I am certain are usually very high quality control processes and expectations. 

I look forward to hearing from your Snake Colour Control Subject Matter Experts regarding what might be done to prohibit such truly horrifying occurrences from scarring future snake lovers across this fine nation.

Yours in Service and Yellow Snake Adoration.

Yes, I may have spent most of the week at a Medieval festival and… Yes, I had time on my hands due to being stuck in a car.  I have to say that the behemoth conglomerate that is Nestle Australia is on top of their customer service game though.  Making everything from coffee and milo, to noodles and instant oats, to baby formula and dog food… they’ve got a finger in every pie and I admit I was surprised at how quickly they replied to my overly wordy errr… complaint?  In fact it took them barely four hours to send the following response:

Hi Borys,

We are concerned to learn of your experience with your recent purchase of one of our products, ALLENS Snakes Alive.

Prior to packing, the lollies are sorted and blended so that the balance of varieties is fairly even. However, it would appear that the balance of assortments in the packet which was purchased was not to your liking.  Although the assortment in the package was not to your particular liking, as we state on the package “Quantity of each lolly may vary.”

Thank you for reporting this matter as it allows us to investigate our consumers concerns.  We apologise for this product not meeting your expectations and have arranged to post you a gift card as reimbursement through the mail. 


A. Grunt.
Nutrition, Health and Wellness is at the heart of everything we do.

Naturally, we shall find out what a Nestle ‘gift card’ is in due course… but anything is better than getting a cheque in the mail for a mere $2.49 as reimbursement for the disappointing item which then has to be taken to a bank!  Urgh.  Well done Nestle.
UPDATE –  10th April 2013:
Seeing that I don’t really associate Allen’s Snakes Alive with the Nestlé Corporate Mothership… today I received in the mail a letter from Nestlé having completely forgotten (goldfish!) about the complaint (above) that I wrote last week. Was it really only last week?  Their letter pretty much mirrored the email that they sent out last week, ‘here at Nestlé we take customer feedback very seriously; we appreciate you taking the time to let us know you were dissatisfied with your Neslté product; we hope you will continue to enjoy your favourite Nestlé products in the future; and here is a $10 Nestlé giftcard to use on any Nestle products of your choosing!’  I don’t think they could have used their company name in the letter more if they had tried, but they sent out the giftcard as promised, so yay! Go Nestlé, Babykillers and Purveyors of Many Coloured Snakes, Just Not Yellow!

The only remaining mystery in relation to the Great Yellow Snake Incident that is yet outstanding is… how on earth did anyone in their Customer Service Department take my ridiculously wordy complaint seriously at all?  Not sure I would have!

nestle complain feedback gift card

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