WAITROSE have apologised after a customer was forced to fork out over £14 to buy a hot chocolate for a Big Issue seller.
Dominic McGregor wanted to buy the £2.40 beverage from the young woman sitting outside but was told no disposable cups were available .
Rather than give up he shelled out £12 for a reusable Waitrose mug, filled it with hot chocolate, and handed the drink over.
Dominic then took to social media to make a bitter complaint about the incident at Waitrose’s store in Alderley Edge, Cheshire, on Saturday.
Dominic captioned the images: “Disgusting behaviour by the team at Waitrose.
“I asked if I could by the Big Issue seller a hot drink, [but] due to policy of the cafe they have no cups or mugs they could use or give.
“Had to buy a £12 reusable cup off the shelf to buy a hot chocolate.”
He uploaded a photo of the lady holding the cup he had bought for her, and despite his displeasure with Waitrose, she appears chuffed with his generosity.
Dominic also posted a picture of the cafe itself showing the price list and the hot drink machine in the background with no cups in sight.
He also provided proof of the receipt for his purchase showing how his good deed came to £14.40.
Ali Parsons was among those to criticise Waitrose, writing: “How ridiculous and incredibly short sighted of them!”
Francine Healey wrote: “Shocking. A little understanding goes a long way!”
Jennifer Bulcock replied: “Well that individual now has a cup for future good deed refills. Well done.”
And Leeds Postcards commented: “I think it is the unjoined-up thinking of their virtue signalling that irks. They no longer provide thin charity giving 5p bags but push thick plastic bags for 10p.
“They don’t supply paper ones, their paper bin liners cost 18p each! But well done you.”
But not everyone backed Dominic.
Eva Caletkova replied: “Why doing good and attacking at the same time? I think Waitrose’s new strategies to reduce plastic pollution are important.
“And I’m sure that Big Issue sellers have income from the magazines we purchase and regular breaks and support. Better to do good without attacking.”
Sian Katie Leigh commented: “Disgusting is a harsh term if they physically don’t have what you were asking for.”
Daniel WK wrote: “Did you expect them to bring back single use cups just for you mate? You realise if they don’t have it, it means they don’t have it. You can’t magic it up out of nowhere. Silly dig.”
A Waitrose spokeswoman said: “”We’re very sorry for this. We don’t have single-use takeaway coffee cups in our shops but we could have dealt with this better.
“We’re very happy to refund the cost of the mug and drink when the customer next visits.”
Last week it was revealed Waitrose is starting a trial aimed at reducing packaging by removing plastic from flowers and plants and offering more loose fruit and vegetables.
Customers will be able to use their own containers to buy and refill produce such as pasta, rice and cereals.