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 May 14, 2005
Grocery Cards
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If a supermarket can track what foods you buy, should they be responsible in telling you about important recalls? And should this technology created to track you down also allow stores to potentially save your life.

Jana Goodwin is pregnant and had a craving for tacos.  She bought ground beef at her local supermarket in Seattle,Washington in December.  Jill Crowson also purchased ground beef from the same supermarket chain and served it to her family. But then they heard about the nation's first ever case of mad cow disease resulting in a government recall of 10,000 pounds of beef.

Some of the recalled beef came from the very store where both Jana and Jill bought it. Jill believes the store had a responsibility to contact those customers who bought the potentially tainted beef.and the way to do that? Both women say with their supermarket card.

But a CBS poll found that even in the event of a food recall, most cardholders would not want supermarkets to use their buying information to locate them. But when it came to a potentially life threatening contamination, more cardholders were willing to put privacy aside.

The supermarket chain did not use the customers' card information to alert them of this recall, citing privacy concerns. Just recently there was a massive meatball recall in our area. The grocery store chain where the recall originated from did not contact it's customers either. A spokesperson tells Call For Action, logistically it would be next to impossible. Not only that, their privacy policy is very strict. Even in the event of a recall, they rely on the media to get the message out faster.

If you have a problem you need help solving contact our Call For Action center Monday thru Thursday from 11 until 1..228-1850.


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