Monday, August 16, 2010

Standing up for a fair shake of the sauce bottle

Julia the PM (at time of writing anyway) was asked by a reporter in Townsville yesterday "Should tomato sauce be free with a meat pie".

Now, for some perverse reason that has become a source (excuse the pun) for much mirth in the media, but I think it needs a little deconstruction.

As this blog is all about the little things in life that bug me, it is perhaps an appropriate conundrum to investigate.

So, harking back to my youth, until these little bits of packaging came on to the scene tomato sauce was free. it came in a bottle on the counter at your local shop or a squeeze bottle at the condiments area of the footy canteen.

Now in those days you were buying a pie, not the condiments. You did not have to pay for the sauce on your pie. You did not have to pay for the salt on your chips. And you did not have to pay for the sugar in your tea or coffee. (Yes, dear reader, in my youth they sold just as much teas as coffee at the footy!) Condiments were free.

Then came packaged servings of tomato sauce in the era of economic rationalism.
Now, I like some aspects of the "user pays" system, but these goals should not be at the expense of the "server your customers well" idea.

To me, supplying condiments is a "cost of doing business" rather than a "profit centre" issue. Good business people who care about their customers and not charging a petty 10c for a little disposable packet of sauce always get my patronage. So bring back the condiments counter and the sauce squeezer please and get rid of portion control - that is what your customers want! And another thing, about those bloody disposable sauce sachets...

er, see ya at half past...

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