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Old 04-25-2009, 06:57 PM   #1
Mar 2009
Posts: 40

I need to vent a little frustration and put out a warning about WB.

A couple weeks ago I bought 30+ packs of dry yeast and 1 pack of liquid yeast from their site. That was all I was buying. I ended up getting everything I ordered, however, all 6 packs of s-23 that I bought had an expiration date of 5/2009, and the 4 packs of t58 I bought had an expiration date of 7/2009.

I know that these dates aren't necessarily hard expiration dates - but they normally are good for 2 years +. Some of the other packages had dates in January 2011.

Does WB really think they should be sending out that much almost expired yeast to online customers who can't see the dates on the packages they are ordering? I am (obviously) stocking up for the next 6-12 months when I buy 30 packs of dry yeast.

I emailed the service address and their response was that I could ship it back to them for a refund. I asked for a partial refund of the dated yeast or credit for future purchase because I don't really feel like dealing with sending back their product. I thought 1/2 the cost would be reasonable since I assumed I would be fine pitching two packs of old yeast which put the loss at <$10. I thought this would be reasonable and would be a way to keep me as a customer.

WB replied back that their policy is to accept returns for 60 days. I explained to them that me this was because of their lack of disclosure (the expiration dates) and that I shouldn't have to put in the extra effort to make myself whole and that if their policy is to push off their old product on their internet customers that I would be happy to share this with my homebrewing friends so they don't run into the same problem as I did. Again, they restated the offer to allow me to ship it back to them.

So, there is the story. Be careful when ordering from WB, you might end up with something that has been on a shelf for 2 years.

Old 04-25-2009, 07:17 PM   #2
RedIrocZ-28's Avatar
Oct 2008
Grand Rapids, MI
Posts: 845
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Haven't you ever heard the phrase "Sometimes when life gives you lemons, you should find a guy with a bottle of tequila, and some chick with a salt shaker and party your ass's off." ?

That said, you are trying to get money back for a product that you have not yet used, but intend to use, and they should send you back money why?

When you placed an order to them, you agreed to their terms and conditions. Like it or not, those are the terms you agreed to.

Where I work, we give out sales receipts that give a 1 year warranty with the return of a defective product, so long as the receipt is returned with the defective product. No receipt, no warranty. If I can't verify that #1 you even bought what you have in your hand from me and #2 within 1 year's time, I am not giving you a free replacement. No if's and's or but's. Its policy and its there for a reason. Don't like it? Too bad.

Although, I do agree with you completely that they shouldn't be selling yeast thats so close to expiration date unless they intend to stand behind their product and have a money back guarantee, kinda hard to prove though that it doesn't work.

Old 04-25-2009, 08:50 PM   #3
Buford's Avatar
Oct 2006
Richmond, VA
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I honestly wouldn't really care that much. I'm still using dry yeast I've had in my fridge dated 2007 without any issue.
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Old 04-25-2009, 11:08 PM   #4
Sep 2008
Denver, CO
Posts: 1,082
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WHy not just use those packs first and relax?

Old 04-25-2009, 11:15 PM   #5
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Jun 2006
UP of Michigan, Winter Texan
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I'm surprised you were dissatisfied with Williams Brewing. I've had wonderful experiences with them. I bought my Perlicks from them, and the drip trays. I forgot to order an item, but didn't want to pay shipping, so I called when they opened. (I ordered online). They already had my order together, but still shipped out my extra item without charging me extra.

I guess if they said you could return the yeast, why not return it? They said they'll take the return, and then you wouldn't be out anything. I don't think that keeping the items, and using them, but expecting a credit is fair. You can return them if you want to. I'd keep them, and just use the oldest ones first. I have tons of Nottingham (just got it recently from a different online LHBS) that are about ready to outdate. I'll just use them as I need them.
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Old 04-25-2009, 11:16 PM   #6
bad coffee
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Jun 2008
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They sold you viable yeast, not past the expiration date. They didn't do a damn thing wrong.

Make a starter with it if you're concerned. It will probably be just fine.

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Old 04-25-2009, 11:39 PM   #7
The Pol
Feb 2007
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Meh... I can see what you are saying, but they sold you a viable product.

When I bought 12 months worth of yeast from Brewmasters, I talked to Ed about the importance of the Exp. Date. He checked them all, then sent them. If I am buying a "perishable" ( I use that loosely with dry yeast) product that I plan to have in storage for a while, I make my expectation known.

Old 04-25-2009, 11:44 PM   #8
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Aug 2006
Whitehouse Station, NJ
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I'm all for ranting about bad customer service but I don't agree that you got bad service here. None of them are expired. If they were, they would have refunded you. Put yourself in a home brew shop owner's shoes. Would you start throwing out dry yeast packs that are due to expire in 4 months?
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Old 04-25-2009, 11:46 PM   #9
The Pol
Feb 2007
Posts: 11,454
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Bottom line, if you are buying something sight unseen, you need to make your expectation known.

Old 04-26-2009, 12:00 AM   #10
Mar 2009
Posts: 40

Originally Posted by RedIrocZ-28 View Post
That said, you are trying to get money back for a product that you have not yet used, but intend to use, and they should send you back money why?
Because they want to keep a customer?

I agree that it is their policy and they don't have to do anything other than offered, which is why I explained to them my policy as a customer and gave them the option to do something which made more sense for both parties.

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