Woolworths shoppers have been left frustrated in recent weeks after a noticeable lack of meat on supermarket shelves in Cootamundra.
Disgruntled customer Adam Gammon took to social media last Tuesday saying “Good job Woolworths, you put off all the locals working in the meat department and we can’t even get mince”.
He was backed up by a horde of locals citing similar stories of empty shelves.
On Monday, a Woolworths spokesperson confirmed stock levels were affected.
“We do have team members on unexpected leave which means our supply is not quite up to our normal standard but this should be resolved within the week,” the spokesperson said.
The spokesperson admitted the current situation is not in line with the supermarket’s aims.
“Woolworths aims to have sufficient meat on our shelves to satisfy our customers at all times,” the spokesperson said.
Cootamundra’s two butcher stores Wattle Butchery and Cootamundra Butchery, together with IGA supermarket, which is supplied by Cootamundra Butchery, have been the big winners in the debacle from Woolworths as people shy away from the supermarket giant back to their local butchers.
David Jarvis of Cootamundra Butchery said they supply IGA with fresh meat three times a day and there has been a definite spike in demand over the last few weeks.
He said he also has a loyal clientele of people who come into the Wallendoon Street store.
“We try to cater for everyone, in your local butcher you can get exactly what you want,” Mr Jarvis said.
This is a sentiment backed up by Wattle Butchery’s John Derrick.
“It comes back to service, here you can get two chops or 20 chops, we offer that flexibility,” Mr Derrick said.
Both butchers stores also have an emphasis on local, premium produce.
Back in January, a Woolworths spokesperson confirmed the four current staff in the butchers department would be cut to two.