DOWNEY (CBSLA.com) — Dozens of customers waited in line Monday morning outside of a Downey market to receive a refund for what they say was a bad batch of tamales that ruined Christmas.
Several customers carried bags of their spoiled, discolored tamales to show as proof that the masa used to make the tamales was bad.
At 5 p.m. CBS2’s Cristy Fajardo said a line had formed around the building. To add to the frustration, many customers were turned away because the store ran out of cash to give refunds. the store’s VP said.
Amapola Deli & Market VP and COO Carlos Galvan, Jr. said refunds will be given to those customers on a different date.
Galvan, Jr. said the problem appears to be with the corn supplier and is not believed to be a health issue, but more a problem of flavor.
“It tasted like liquid rust,” Raymond Uribe said. “I couldn’t get the taste out of my mouth, I even took a shot of, um, apple cider vinegar, some sodium bicarbonate to get the taste out of my mouth. It lingered for 10 hours.”
The owner of Amapola Deli & Market issued a written statement that reads in part: “For us, our customers are our priority, which is why we have proposed to take concrete actions to make the refund.”
CBS2’s Jasmine Viel reported customers, however, are saying a refund simply isn’t enough.
A store spokesman said they are looking into what caused the tamales to spoil, and wish to regain the confidence of their customers again.
The grocery store, which has been famous for making Christmas tamales for more than 50 years, has four locations in the Los Angeles area.