Germany’s biggest supermarket chain has hit back on social media at a mum who told her child: “If you don’t work hard at school, you will end up working here.”
The incident happened at the Edeka supermarket in the town of Lichtenfels in the southern German province of Bavaria.
The woman had been in the store with her child and then suddenly pointed at one of the staff behind the counter, saying they would end up in the same place if they did not start studying harder.
The rude behaviour upset the supermarket worker, prompting managers to post a message, which has since been liked 75,000 times and commented on 6,500 times, defending their staff.
They wrote: “This post is to the young mother who pointed her finger at one of our staff and told her child: ‘If you don’t work hard at school, you will end up working here.’
“That is something we cannot agree with. The reality is that if your child doesn’t learn, then they will be standing in the queue at the job centre.
“In our stores, only well-educated professionals with a school leaving certificate and professional training are allowed to work. Many join us when they are middle-aged, some who have graduated from high school.
“And as long as there are people like you who want to point the finger at people like us, it probably does little good to point out that an apprenticeship is worth as much as a qualification and somebody who has both is more useful than somebody who has only graduated from high school.
“And to you we say: a certificate in empathy and humanity, respect and shared values are something your child will not learn at school. But we are quite happy to pass them on when needed. If your child works hard and gets a high school qualification and is lucky enough to be standing where our cashier was today, you will find that even people like you are welcomed with a friendly laugh. That is because they have learned from us that every person deserves respect, even if it is sometimes difficult.”
Edeka is the largest grocery retail chain in Germany with 20 percent of the market share and 15,000 stores, many of them owned by independent retailers who then buy from Edeka.
It pulled out of all of its foreign supermarket ownership including in Austria in order to concentrate on its core German market and managed to secure its place as the country’s number 1.