With Christmas Day officially over, Woolworths has announced hot cross buns will be hitting shelves a little early – and the announcement has some shoppers furious.
Though the holiday is more than three months away, Woolworths announced it would bring back hot cross buns with Cadbury Caramilk chips, sold exclusively at Woolworths stores, from Boxing Day.
The supermarket said the buns would be made in a larger quantity, and available for a longer period of time, so more fanatics could get their hands on a four-pack for $5.
The range also includes Cadbury chocolate chip brioche hot cross buns and decadent fruit hot cross buns with soaked vine fruit, cranberries and candied orange.
The apple and cinnamon hot cross buns will make a return, as well as the gluten-free varieties.
“Our teams across the country are baking up a storm to bring Aussies the best innovation, quality and value that Woolworths has to offer this Easter,” Woolworths merchandise manager Donald Keith said.
“We sold more than 1.8 million individual hot cross buns the first week they were on sale last year, and we anticipate the same as customers look to close off 2022 with a delicious and favourite treat.
“Partnering with Cadbury to bring back the highly anticipated Indulgent Hot Cross Buns featuring the delicious Cadbury Caramilk was an easy decision. Given the feedback from customers last Easter, we are confident these decadent buns will be popular once again.”
‘Are you kidding me?’
Some shoppers did not share Mr Keith’s enthusiasm.
“Are you kidding me? This must be a p**s take?” one furious shopper wrote.
“Take hot cross buns and shove it until Good Friday.”
They added, “I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas today and now we can look forward to the hot cross buns out tomorrow in the supermarkets, God spare me this lunacy.”
Others criticised Woolies for having the buns out so early, but not making sure there was enough availability once Easter weekend rolled around.
“Woolworths: The people want hot cross buns, we’ll start selling them the first day we’re open after Christmas! Easter Saturday? Nah, we don’t need hot cross buns to be available, nobody could possibly want them then,” one wrote.
Others, however, praised the call – even going as far as to say hot cross buns were part of their families’ Boxing Day traditions.
“Cannot wait!” one wrote, garnering the response, “Boxing Days at Woolworths, we have hot cross buns and I grab a pack for toasting and butter on it. Yum.”
Coles faces its own backlash
Supermarket rival Coles faces the same controversy in 2020, when it too decided to make hot cross buns available from Boxing Day.
The chain said at the time it made the call due to high demand.
In an arguably more controversial move, however, Coles this year also decided to bring back its Vegemite hot cross buns, claiming they were back by popular demand.
“The savoury Vegemite mash-up is a favourite but for something a little sweeter, the new brioche dough base of our limited-edition Fruity Brioche Hot Cross Buns gives a more premium feel to the classic taste our customers know and love,” Coles executive general manager of fresh Andy Mossop said.
He confirmed Coles would have 80 per cent more volume to meet demand, after the Vegemite buns sold out in weeks last year.
Aldi backs a later roll out
Those furious about a too-early hot cross bun roll out ought to head to Aldi, which has confirmed it will wait until the new year to put its range on the shelves.
Aldi’s hot cross buns will arrive in stores on January 20.
“The Australian made Baker’s Life range will include traditional fruit hot cross buns, fruitless and chocolate chip,” an ALDI spokesperson said.
“Our customers can also look forward to the addition of some new varieties closer to Easter.”
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