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Old 08-03-2018, 11:57 AM
 
515 posts, read 290,112 times
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This thread will attempt to keep track of generic HEB grocery brand products that do not taste the same/good as the national brands and/or the quality is not up to par.

Over the years I have thought about keeping track of these types of products by writing them down. As of now, I am just recalling these products by memory and because of recent use of the products. HEB is a great company that makes great products. Mostly, in my experience, HEB grocery products are pretty spot on compared to the national brands. Many HEB brand things taste identical or very similar to the national brands. That is the advantage and the selling point of generic items, that they are identical (or incredibly close) to name brand items at a cheaper price.

Unfortunately, I have ran across some dud HEB brand grocery products. While taste preference is opinionated and therefore subjective and hard(er) to track, if there is a general consensus on a product, perhaps HEB can read this and make a positive change in that product, hence the point of this thread. HEB can not fix what they don't know is broken and if no one tells them. If there is a general/majority consensus on a product perhaps that will motivate them to improve it.

Below are a few that I can remember off the top of my head:

1. HEB Dill pickles - These pickles are incredibly sour compared to brands like Vlasic and Claussen. The same could be said about the Walmart brand of pickles as Walmart's brand of pickles are also incredibly sour compared to the name brands. HEB brand dill pickles seem excessive on the sour notes/flavor and not enough on the Dill notes.

2. HEB Berry Crunch (a version of the Captain Crunch cereal) - While the visual aspects such as colors and shapes of this cereal are identical to the name brand Captain Crunch cereal dont let this fool you, the taste is the difference. Captain crunch consists of two flavors, a peanut buttery type piece and a fruity berry flavored type piece. Both of these flavors in both of these pieces are incredibly diluted and bland comparatively in the HEB brand product. It makes HEB Berry Crunch very bland overall compared to Captain Crunch.

As of now, this is the list. Right now its a small list as I wish I would have wrote down the other HEB products that I tasted over the years that were lacking flavor, missing something and in other ways, not up to par with a national brand. I will plan to come on here and write more of them as I think of them.

What about you? Have you encountered any HEB brand grocery items that seemed "off", lacking flavor, not tasting good overall comparatively or that had consistent poor quality? If so, what was it?
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Old 08-03-2018, 12:01 PM
 
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I would say most if not all cereals aren't as good. Regardless, it IS cheaper, and it serves it's purpose.
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Old 08-03-2018, 12:34 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
3,804 posts, read 4,028,083 times
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HEB Shells & Cheese are light years ahead of Velveeta Shells & Cheese.

Name brand sodas are almost always better that HEB sodas.

HEB shredded cheese seems to be better than national brands with the exception of Borden.

HEB Milk is on par with any national brands.
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Old 08-03-2018, 01:49 PM
 
Location: San Antonio/Houston/Tricity
40,287 posts, read 58,391,293 times
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I stopped buying drinkable yogurt day after I discovered that their brand taste thinner, like watered down, compared to other brands. Kefir is my preference anyway. Thank goodness they didn't spoiled their great taste - no HEB kefir brand yet.
To tell the truth, having a choice of (anything) HEB or other well known national brand, I always go for the national brand, which is getting harder and harder as HEB is trying very hard to replace other brands with their own.
Another thing - while you can track the origin of most other brands, stuff HEB sells under their brand seldom reveal where it came from. It says only: Distributed by HEB. I just checked my fridge and pantry for exact wording, and noticed that I currently don't have anything with HEB logo.
So, yes - not only we have very limited shopping choices here in San Antonio, but also less and less of other brands variety at their store.
People who exclusively shop at HEB and buy their brands, might not even know how often their products are inferior compared to well known brands, and think that everything HEB is wonderful.

BTW: if you want your word across to HEB, OP - post on their Facebook website. They actually read it, although I don't like that they seldom respond, other than posting canned response and asking to call them.
When I have an issue, I want them to make a stand publicly, so other people can be aware of it.
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Old 08-03-2018, 02:24 PM
 
Location: NW San Antonio
196 posts, read 251,872 times
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I buy a lot of the HEB branded stuff but I stay away from the Hill Country Fare items because the quality is noticeably poorer.
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Old 08-03-2018, 05:11 PM
 
515 posts, read 290,112 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elnina View Post
.................
BTW: if you want your word across to HEB, OP - post on their Facebook website. They actually read it, although I don't like that they seldom respond, other than posting canned response and asking to call them.
When I have an issue, I want them to make a stand publicly, so other people can be aware of it.

I do not like "canned responses" either but those types of responses are typical, not just of HEB but of most businesses. Saying too much sometimes can be detrimental and businesses understandably often err on the side of caution even when us customers want more. Since they do read their FB post, maybe after enough people post on here I can link this thread on their FB account page so corporate can have a look through. HEB does a lot of things right but they could use constructive criticism regarding the things they are not.
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Old 08-03-2018, 06:51 PM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
11,311 posts, read 21,393,878 times
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Some HEB products taste better than the name brands, and HEB has some unique products that people miss when they move away. It's true, though, that some of their generics are not up to par. For example, I once found a good sized twig in a can of HEB refried beans. When I contacted HEB about it, I wasn't trying to get a refund, just trying to let them know about the quality control issue because someone less observant than myself could have choked on the twig, they were very argumentative and insisted I needed to return the can to the store. Since I'd rather be shot than wait through their customer service line most days, that wasn't going to happen. I sent them the photos of the can and the twig and told them that would just have to be enough.

Most of the Central Market products are quite good, especially the cereal. Their frosted flakes remind me of good sugary cereal when I was a kid, before everything started to just taste like chemicals.

HEB and Hill Country Fare cheese all seem fine to me. I like HCF maple bacon a lot.

I can't eat their regular potato chips anymore, but when I still could, they all had the same flavor, no matter what flavor it said on the bag. Their pizza flavored cheese puffs are addictive.
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Old 08-03-2018, 11:37 PM
 
40 posts, read 21,527 times
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Frozen corn. I'm used to the kind after you boil it 10 (whatever) minutes and drain the water, it's plump and has a golden buttery taste, even before adding butter and a little black pepper. Now I always seem to get the less-plump kernels that have a toasted off-flavor. (not just HEB, Costco's current supplier's stuff is like that too.)
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Old 08-04-2018, 04:37 AM
 
Location: Stone Oak, San Antonio
768 posts, read 569,790 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhsa View Post
Frozen corn. I'm used to the kind after you boil it 10 (whatever) minutes and drain the water, it's plump and has a golden buttery taste, even before adding butter and a little black pepper. Now I always seem to get the less-plump kernels that have a toasted off-flavor. (not just HEB, Costco's current supplier's stuff is like that too.)
That’s because corn in Texas sucks. My friend tried growing Silver Queen like what’s available in NJ and MD eastern shore, but it couldn’t take the heat. I’m going to try it in a pot and put it in a covered environment when it’s hot.
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Old 08-04-2018, 04:39 AM
 
Location: Stone Oak, San Antonio
768 posts, read 569,790 times
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Taste wise I think H-E-B tortilla chips are average. Where they fall down though is their quality on breakage. I switched to Tostinos national brand. The cantina style chip has a good taste and not nearly the breakage.
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