Turlock Safeway may be in hot water over an in-store display for Fourth of July and Budweiser that prominently featured the uniforms of the U.S. Marines, U.S. Army, and U.S. Navy over mannequins.
One customer, who requested to not be identified, says he found the display to be dishonorable to the men and women who have worn the uniforms, including himself.
“Some genius at their headquarters thought it would be a great idea to use the uniforms of our military, our veterans, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, fathers and mothers…our heroes…to sell beer,” said the customer. “Its pretty disrespectful if you ask me [sic].”
In addition to the Fourth of July, the display was meant to bring attention to a fundraiser for Folds of Honor Foundation, which provides assistance to the spouses and children of servicemembers killed or disabled in service to the United State of America. With each Budweiser product sold $1 will be donated to Folds of Honor.
“When you walk in, it just looks like uniforms selling beer,” the customer said. “There is nothing on the display to suggest there is any type of fundraiser, and to surround the uniforms in beer without any indication of what is going on is pretty poor planning/marketing. Especially the dog tag hanging outside the uniform.”
The customer said he notified the store manager who told him the display was constructed via orders from Safeway Corporate.
Wendy Gutshall, a spokesperson for Safeway Corporate, said the display was not a national schematic and it was unique to the Turlock store.
“Safeway is a proud supporter of the military. The display is exclusive to the Turlock store and they created it to show their patriotism for the Fourth of July. When the store received a complaint from a customer about the proximity of mannequins in uniforms to certain products they immediately moved the display,” Gutshall wrote in a statement to TurlockCityNews.com.