Substitution shenanigans: The wild world of UK supermarkets’ surprising swaps

Substitution shenanigans: The wild world of UK supermarkets' surprising swaps.

Substitution shenanigans: The wild world of UK supermarkets' surprising swaps. Image: Asda / Facebook.

UK supermarket shoppers have reported some truly bizarre substitutions in their grocery orders.

According to Which? the swaps range from mushrooms instead of tampons to cream crackers in lieu of Christmas crackers.

The consumer champion surveyed over 3,000 shoppers for its annual supermarkets survey, evaluating their experiences and substitutions received from the supermarkets they frequented most in the past year.

Overall, 34 per cent of respondents reported receiving a substitution in their recent grocery order from one of the online stores surveyed.

Asda led with the highest proportion of shoppers receiving a substitution (56 per cent), earning just two stars for its choice of substitute items.

Notable substitutions included receiving fruit-scented shower gel instead of fruit and 10 cans of beer instead of washing powder.

Sainsbury’s followed closely, with 41 per cent of customers receiving a substitution and earning two stars for its choice of substitutes.

Unusual replacements included allergy tablets instead of an anti-allergy duvet and flour instead of a loaf of bread.

Morrisons’ shoppers reported substitutions in 33 per cent of orders, with one customer receiving onions instead of cheese and onion crisps.

Tesco saw 32 per cent of shoppers receiving substitutes, with instances like cream crackers instead of Christmas crackers.

Aldi had a substitution rate of 31 per cent, with one shopper receiving fruit sweets instead of fruit salad.

Waitrose had a lower substitution rate at 25 per cent, but one shopper received meat sausages instead of vegetarian sausages.

Iceland saw substitutions in 23 per cent of orders, including one shopper receiving frozen pizza instead of tinned peaches.

Ocado had the lowest substitution rate at 17 per cent, but one shopper received mushrooms instead of tampons.

While grocery substitutions can be inconvenient, they can also pose serious issues for shoppers with dietary requirements.

Some shoppers received items not suitable for their dietary needs, such as lactose-free cheese replaced with regular cheese and vegetarian meals substituted with meat-containing options.

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Written by

Anna Ellis

Originally from Derbyshire, Anna has lived in the middle of nowhere on the Costa Blanca for 19 years. She is passionate about her animal family including four dogs and four horses, musicals and cooking.