17 thoughts on “Graze Rage Over ‘Free Lunch’ Offer That Leaves a Nasty Taste in the Mouth

  1. I had just signed up to graze and put in my card details, when i came across your page! now i have cancelled my ‘free’ order and weekly deliveries and deelted my payment details.
    I knew it was to good to be true…
    Will have to get in touch with my bank to make sure they don’t try to get money out of my account anyway..
    Thanks for the heads up, greatly appreciated. Sam

  2. Seriously?

    I’m not sure I’ve ever come accross a free trial that doesn’t automatically sign you up if you don’t cancel. Funny the angry emailer should mention Which? Magazine as they do the same! It’s common practice. If you can’t be bothered to read the terms and conditions then don’t complain when you get burnt.

  3. I’ve been through the Graze signup process within the last several months, and I’m surprised that anyone could get through it without knowing exactly what they are signing up for… could it be possible he proceeded through the signup quickly and just didn’t read? I found that at SEVERAL points during the signup process they make the arrangement very clear, and you even have to choose how often you want to have boxes delivered. Even if you missed all that, while they may be withdrawing that $x amount of x amount of weeks, you’d still be getting another box then as well…. so doesn’t that make it a little impossible to not know what’s occurring? I don’t wish anyone to be caught in the kind of situation you describe, but that just doesn’t seem like what’s happening here. It just seems like someone wanted to get angry about something.

  4. Why would you provide your card details for a free box?! It’s obvious it’s going to be an ongoing subscription that you then have to cancel. It’s the same with most online freebies or trials, like LoveFilm. Read the small print and the FAQ before signing up! I’ve had lovely experiences with graze- you can change your deliveries, cancel and come and come back whenever you like with no problems at all. It’s not a scam and to call it such just shows you don’t know the meaning of the word!

    You signed up for a free box, you got a free box. You didn’t read the terms and conditions (why did you think they asked for your card details?) so decided to call it a scam when money was taken from your account? Seems a bit harsh.

    • Paula – There are many FREE offers where details of a payment card are provided as proof of identity and in the *hope and expectation* that an offer will wow a potential customer and turn them into an actual customer.

      At that point, with the details on file, it is then easy to ‘switch on’ the payment process – though crucially that only happens with the card holder’s express approval.

      Many companies (the reputable ones that behave transparently and treat customers as valued advocates and not as a cash cow to be milked) will even give free offers, trial periods etc *without* requesting card details.

      In either of the scenarios, above, what most certainly doesn’t happen is that the company involved starts pickpocketing your bank account as soon as the ‘free’ offer has been redeemed.

      I have to ask again, what’s ‘free’ about a deal which then takes money out of your bank account on a regular basis for products you don’t want?

      I can only hope that your experience (and that of other commenters, Jessica and Nicola) means that Graze has responded to negative feedback and changed the way it operates the free offer – to become far more transparent and honest about it.

      If that is *not* the case, then I couldn’t disagree with you more.

      Consumers who take the caveat emptor (buyer beware) attitude are not much more than apologists for appalling corporate behaviour.

      The thing is, why should we consumers have to negotiate tricksy and confusing small print designed to confound and baffle?

      Of course, the answer is we shouldn’t – and companies which adopt such practices will be viewed with suspicion and contempt and – hopefully – fail to flourish.

      My biggest disappointment with Graze was that the company clearly projects one image (ethical, likeable, trustworthy), while this nasty, insidious ‘offer’ said the complete opposite.

  5. I agree with Paula… i have just found this article after writing to Graze and then wondering why people would ever complain to them..this was the only thing I could find any one making a fuss over. Of course its about the payment. As consumers we always feel that we should be able to pay the least to get the most. if its free then even better…

    think it through, if a company did not have certain terms and conditions it would not be able to flourish. If a company did not charge customers for their service, they would not be able to flourish. The terms are their for a reason, read them. consumers who think they can argue a point that a company has cleary covered are ridiculous. Not everything can fit on the main page, so unfortunately has to go in the small print. You know about, you moan about, yet you dont read it. You have no leg to stand on.

    Also if you dont want the product, why are you signing up for it? only because its free? how on earth are they supposed to continue if consumers only went in for the free stuff. there would be no company to try out. They are now at a place where they are making enough to provide a free box, and the box itself comes with offers for your friends. You try it, dont like it, cancel it. simple. if you do like it, carry on paying for the service and stop moaning about the fact that it has charged you.

    I dont think its appauling corporate behaviour, it is just standard for the world we live in, Nothing is free and if you think that it is you are living in a different world to the rest of us. I signed up with a free code and at no point was I confused about the offer. this was over a year ago and i still get a box every week.

    Furthermore, the article states “Perhaps the full scale of this won’t be obvious for a while, because many people may not notice the small sums (£3.89 a time) disappearing from their bank accounts.

    When they do, I suspect Graze will get quite a few more angry emails from ex-customers.” – if they do not notice the small amount leaving their account, they might notice the box of food turning up at their door.

    Basically, if you put your account details online, you are responsible for it. If you dont want money take out of your account, dont give a company the facility to do so, at least make sure you know whats happening with your details before you enter them.

  6. Two boxes arrived. The free one and so called charged for one. This company does not con anyone it merely has sharp business practices sending unsolicited packages. I wish I had never answered the slip in in my Amazon UK parcel, I have placed a similar tale on my blog. Their site is badly designed but I did eventually cancel my care after £3.85 had been taken. Have complained to Amazon and my card issuer.

  7. I was just about to sign up for the free box and as soon as the card details popped up i got a bit more aware of their words. googled this and found your article. thanks for confirming my suspicions. bad business practise.

  8. I actually made a similar mistake. I ordered a free box and paid for another because I thought it was a really cool idea (and their snacks look really tasty), but I didn’t receive either of them. I emailed to complain and now they’re telling me that it was put in the mail and I should’ve received it by now. Either a magical fairy has come by and stolen it twice (which is bull considering I’ve been here both of the days the boxes were said to be delivered) or they just flat out haven’t sent it.
    Now I can’t seem to delete my credit card details from their site. I don’t know what to do as I’m not from the UK and I’m not sure of the laws. Are companies allowed to do this here? Am I fine to report this to my bank back home as an unauthorized transaction? D:

    • I don’t know if you’ve got things sorted now but under UK law they must cancel your card when requested. If they haven’t, then yes, report this as an unauthorised transaction. As for the money you paid, if you do not receive a product that you paid for, you are entitled to a refund under UK law.

  9. Their smallprint is in light grey writing at the bottom of the page despite plenty of room for proper writing. Ethical? My arse!

  10. I HAVE JUST SIGNED UP AND I AM FUMING WITH THE WAY I HAVE BEEN CONNED.YES THE SITE MAKES IT CLEAR THAT YOU CAN CANCEL AT ANY TIME………….BUT ONLY IT APPEARS THE NEXT DELIVERY………AND THEN YOU SEEM TO BE LIABLE FOR THE FOLLOWING WEEK’S DELIVERY UNLESS YOU CANCEL THAT ONE IN THE NEXT TWO DAYS AND THEN ONLY THAT IS CANCELLED AND YOU ARE LIABLE FOR THE DELIVERY AFTER THAT. THERE IS NOTHING THAT ALLOWS YOU TO CANCEL THE WHOLE AGREEMENT THAT YOU HAVE PROVISIONALLY AGREED TO FOR THE FREE SAMPLE. i FEEL WE NEED PROPER LEGAL ADVICE AS TO HOW TO TERMINATE THIS AGREEMENT FOR GOOD. THE SITE ONLY STATES THAT YOU MAY CANCEL THE NEXT ORDER (and even that you have to do 5 days before delivery) AND GIVES NO OPTION TO COME OUT OF THE SCHEME.

    • I got in touch with my visa company and complained that money had been taken out of my account without my permission, and they investigated and refunded the money. I then emailed Graze to tell them that I was going to keep the unsolicited goods. No further action and I recouped all the money. If you are not satisfied with something you buy with visa you can normally get the money back without the visa company intervening. Good Luck

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