'Where's the $20 lobster?' Coles and Woolworths slammed as shoppers miss out

Brooke Rolfe
·News Reporter
·2-min read

The excitement surrounding half-price lobsters at Coles and Woolworths ahead of Christmas has been largely short-lived due to a major supply and demand discrepancy.

Both retailers have struggled to keep up with demand after revealing early in December the product would be hitting shelves across the country for just $20 a piece.

The price came down when lobsters flooded the Australian market as a result of the Australia-China trade dispute.

Despite introducing a four-per-person limit on the seafood favourite, stores have still seemingly been unable to keep a steady supply on shelves.

Many annoyed shoppers have taken to social media to express their frustration, accusing the retailers of false advertising and majorly underdelivering on the offer.

Shopper passes a Coles shopfront.
Coles responded to backlash from customers struggling to get lobsters. Source: Getty

“I have been to three different stores today to get your crayfish and not one to be seen. Very disappointed that you lie to your long-term customers,” one Woolworths shopper wrote to its Facebook page.

“Very, very poor. Very very disappointing when we were relying on getting some for Xmas,” another said.

“Where's the $20 lobster? I have been six times when they first open, but there’s never any left,” a third wrote.

Coles shoppers were equally as peeved, arguing there was “something fishy going on”.

“Thanks for wasting the valuable time of so many loyal customers,” one person wrote in a post to its page.

Lobsters inside a trap.
The lobster supply has not been able to meet demand. Source: Coles/Supplied

“Where are the lobsters you liars,” another said.

“Been going daily and at all different times and different stores to find lobsters only to be told they are sold out,” a third person wrote.

$20 lobster deal extended

A Coles spokesperson told Yahoo News Australia that its WA rock lobsters had been exceedingly popular this Christmas.

“We have more lobsters arriving into our stores and we will continue sourcing the MSC certified sustainable WA rock lobsters over the coming weeks.

“Coles will continue to offer Australian lobsters for $20 each until January 5 so that they can be enjoyed by our customers in the New Year.”

Front of Woolworths store.
Woolworths was accused of false advertising its lobsters. Source: Getty

Similarly, Woolworths reported that it too had experienced an “extraordinary response” to its bargain rock lobsters.

“While tens of thousands more WA rock lobster will continue arriving in stores before Christmas, demand continues to outweigh supply and it’s likely not all customers will be able to buy a lobster before Christmas,” a spokesperson said.

“Despite ordering more than 20 times the lobsters as last year and applying purchase limits, customer demand has just exceeded all expectations.”

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