Westwood shopper’s hilarious ‘complaint’ email to Tesco CEO results in a sweet bonus

An added extra in Linda's broccoli

A hilarious ‘complaint’ letter to the CEO of supermarket giant Tesco has resulted in a small bonus for a teaching assistant from Westwood.

Linda Appleyard originally tried to email customer services after finding a small, blue caterpillar in her Tesco-bought broccoli.

But a reply said the email account was not being manned so Linda decided to go straight to the top and contact CEO Dave Lewis!

‘A teeny complaint’

Outlining the catalogue of events upon discovering the little critter, Linda wrote: “I hope everyone is well and staying safe where you are, I must say your staff at the Broadstairs branch at Westwood Cross are fantastic! They are friendly, reassuring and extremely diligent regarding distancing and hygiene – particularly the trolleys and self service hand sets.

“I do have a teeny complaint though. It seems I had a stowaway in my broccoli. Poor chap appears to be a blue caterpillar, rather squished at one end .

“While I appreciate the odd little critter is going to get through, I didn’t appreciate sticking my finger in the icky bit, and my two little dogs didn’t appreciate my screaming and swearing (when I’d realised what I’d actually come into contact with), suffice to say, it probably took a good hour or so until they would come back in from the garden.

“Due to the delicate queasy feelings coming up from my tummy, I could not eat the broccoli and so sadly, both it and our little blue, friend got relegated to the food waste bin. RIP little dude.

“Consequently my black bean beef and broccoli became just my black bean beef. I wept at my loss, as I’m sure little Blue must have wept whilst gazing out through the plastic wrap until he met his demise.

“I have since been back to Tesco, but can’t bring myself to enter the broccoli aisle. So no broccoli for now, I am partial to a bit of Cadbury’s milk chocolate though.

“Have a lovely day, and as I said, fabulous store at Westwood Cross!”

To Linda’s surprise she received a swift response and a token gift to salve her ‘queasy feelings.’

‘Sorry for the added unwanted extra’

Tesco member Fiona Kitchings replied: “Thank you for contacting Dave Lewis, our Chief Executive. I have been asked to reply on his behalf.

“I’m sorry to hear that you found an added extra in the broccoli you had purchased from our store, I can imagine the surprise you and your dogs must have got when you discovered it hidden in amongst the florets.

“When growing our broccoli, we encourage our suppliers to use as little pesticides as possible. This is to allow the insects that are beneficial to help our crops thrive. Our suppliers inspect and, where appropriate, wash the broccoli at several stages throughout the growing and harvesting stages – unfortunately it seems that we failed to spot and remove this caterpillar which had turned into a little butterfly.

“Thank you for your kind comments regarding the fantastic service you are receiving while visiting the Westwood Cross store, I have passed these on to the Store Manager so that they share them with the team.

“To thank you for bringing these matters to our attention, and to say sorry for the added unwanted extra. I have now requested for a £5 Tesco digital moneycard to be sent to your email address this morning. Please use this to get yourself some nice chocolate as a treat from me.”

Linda, who has sent a thank you note to Tesco, said: “Chocolate is now on my shopping list!”


  1. Made us all chuckle, good on you I got zilch after slipping on their flooring that was subsequently traced all over the store after MY fall, fruit juice spillage so they blamed another customer while I was eventually hospitalized, first-aiders and staff luckily knew me.I did not pursue a personal injuries claim, unfortunate as later got arthritis in the leg injured at time. Still, plenty worse off than I am, laughter really is the best medicine.

  2. The letter and the letter did make things lighten up after the gloom we are going through.Specially loved Linda’s sense of humour and the complaint letter turns to be one of the most delightful write up in the recent past.

  3. Complaining about a bug in veg… really .. ffs so
    E people just need to get there priories in order

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