"Pure chaos" at Coles: Shoppers cause a frenzy over latest craze
Coles customers have come out in full force as they descended on shopfronts around the nation on Wednesday morning.
Wednesday marked the first day of the Coles Little Shop 2 promotion after a very successful debut last year.
A worker at Coles Wynard in Sydney's CBD shared with 7News.com.au about the “pure chaos” that started as soon as they opened their doors.
"We went through 10 cages (640 boxes) in less than half an hour," they shared, adding that workers had been overwhelmed at the response.
Customers justified the chaos through a simple message.
"They sold out too fast last year."
Others said that they weren’t into the hype but were getting them for others.
"I didn't do it last year, but people at work went nuts for them so I promised I'd get some for them," customer Tanya told 7News.com.au.
At the time of speaking, she had three cases, miniature shopping trolleys and a mini shopping basket in her arms.
Coles acknowledged the ruckus and said that the bosses didn’t expect the toys to sell so fast.
“We have lots of collector cases available and our team members are working hard to keep stock on the shelves,” the spokesman said.
“Some of our new items, including Coles trucks and registers, are selling more quickly than anticipated and we have extra stock on the way from our warehouses to stores.”
However, some were quick to call out the hypocrisy of the launch.
“The hypocrisy of Coles is outrageous,” Paul Hellier, who made a documentary about plastic waste, said to The Daily Mail.
“It started off Plastic Free July by boasting it had diverted 1.7 billion single-use plastic bags from landfill over the past 12 months, with its data claiming seven in 10 of its consumers now remember to bring a reusable bag when they shop.”
Hellier added, "This madness will only stop if we send Coles and the associated brands a message that will hurt them most – at the cash register. That's why we are calling for a boycott to all the items involved in the promotion.”
Coles said in a statement that the Little Shop collectables aren’t discarded quickly by customers.
“Rather than throwing them out, our customer research shows that of the customers who collected minis last year, 94 per cent have either kept them or given them to family or friends who were collecting,” a spokesperson from Coles said to The Daily Mail.