About a year ago, we changed the cool pockets/sleeves that our chilled items are delivered in. They used to have the outer appearance of a large white envelope and we would stick the below label on it, informing the recipients that there are food items inside and they must open the pocket immediately and keep the items refrigerated.
Of course, the inevitable always happened and we had the occasional confused customer who would call up and claim the salmon hadn't been sent. We would then advise them to check the large white pocket that was with the hamper, which experience told us the recipient may have thrown away thinking it was just a normal ice pack. This was despite it having a label in bold text saying otherwise. They always sounded so panicky after being told to check the envelope, undoubtedly rushing to save their salmon or ham from wherever they last put the ice pack. Thankfully, the chilled packet wouldn't have travelled that far since its accidental disposal. Usually it only made it to a kitchen counter top, forgotten and in prime position for a future trip into the bin. There was one time though, when the packet had made a trip ‘down the yard with the missus’ and we could hear the poor husband running through his house, and shouting out the back door to his wife:
Last year, however, we had the best story by far when it came to those salmon-chill-pocket escapades. In the midst of running around like crazy during Christmas, sorting boxes upon boxes of orders, we got an unexpected call from a customer who had received one of our hampers the year before. Naturally, since it was a past customer, we all thought that he was hoping to order again. How wrong were we! What he said next had us baffled to this day.
The man sheepishly informed us that he received a hamper the Christmas before and, at the time, too had not realised there was salmon in the chill packet. Unlike others though, he had not accidentally thrown the chill packet away, instead he kept it, stashed it in his freezer and had been using it as an ice pack throughout the rest of the year to keep sandwiches cool for picnics!
The hamper he had received was stuffed full of lots of other goodies such as Christmas pudding, mince pies and cake too, so he hadn't noticed that there were some components actually missing. It was not until it was a year on, he finally took the time to read the label on the packet that he realised - Oh… there were things in it and he had been carting this smoked salmon around all year for picnics and day trips. Needless to say, his story made our night that Christmas evening. He sounded so disappointed at having only discovered his salmon and ham at this time that we just had to send him a complimentary packet as a good will gesture. So he did eventually get to savour the taste of that salmon he had unknowingly been carting around for a year.
Nowadays, our chilled pockets had been redesigned to make them even more obvious. Hopefully, now no-one will accidentally throw it away nor use it for picnics without checking the contents first.