4 ways to avoid being overcharged at the grocery store

The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs accused Whole Foods of routinely overcharging customers by overstating the weight of prepackaged meat, dairy and baked goods.Some tips for consumers from the department:

-- Check your receipt for accuracy to ensure you were charged advertised prices, for the correct number of items and the correct taxes.

-- Store ads must be truthful. Stores must honor their advertised prices and have reasonable quantities of the advertised goods available. If an item is out of stock, ask for a rain check.

-- Check the scales. Each must have an up-to-date sticker certifying that it has been inspected and judged to be accurate.

-- Check the weight of packaged goods yourself. In New York City, markets must provide a scale within 30 feet of the section where weighed packaged goods are sold or a sign directing shoppers to a scale.

Whole Foods supermarkets have been routinely overcharging customers by overstating the weight of prepackaged meat, dairy and baked goods, New York City's consumer chief said Wednesday.

In emailed statements, Whole Foods said, "We disagree with the DCA's overreaching allegations." It said the department had made "grossly excessive monetary demands" to settle the dispute, but it would not disclose the amount.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Related story: Whole Foods accused of overcharging customers




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