An Instacart customer has sparked a debate online after she learned that her grocery shopper was a man. The viral video also prompted discourse surrounding gender stereotypes and the proper treatment of Instacart workers.
“My instacart delivery person is a man,” a TikTok user named Ivy wrote in her video. “I’m afraid for the apples and spinach I ordered. He’s already failed to find the right cheese. All hope is lost for my dairy free butter.”
Since posting the TikTok on 3 May, the video has received more than 78k views and 7,600 comments.
“Crying real tears right now,” Ivy captioned the TikTok. “Just send your wife next time, Alexander.”
The viral video prompted many female Instacart customers to share their own experiences with male shoppers, claiming that they often messed up their Instacart orders.
“A man once said that he couldn’t find CARROTS,” one person commented.
“Weaponised incompetence even when they get paid to be competent,” said someone else. “There’s no hope for them.”
Another person wrote, “I’d just cancel the whole order,” while someone else said, “100 per cent guaranteed to get the most rotted veggies and fruits.”
For some, the issue was not just with male Instacart shoppers but men in general apparently being bad grocery shoppers.
“Why can’t men grocery shop,” asked one person. “Like I’ll send my bf and he will say they don’t have it then I’ll go find it.”
“I give my boyfriend a literal list to go shopping with and he still forgets stuff,” shared another TikToker.
Recent studies have shown that the gender gap between “the primary grocery shoppers in their households” is closing. A 2017 survey from Men’s Health showed that 84 per cent of men considered themselves to do most of the grocery shopping, although only men participated in the study. Really, two-thirds of women still handle most of the shopping, according to Today’s Primary Shopper.
Ivy’s video was met with praise on TikTok, but elsewhere online, social media users criticised the video for enforcing a gender stereotype. People also saw the video as taking advantage of gig workers, someone who works a temporary job typically within the service industry.
One person wrote on Twitter: “If you’re that picky about it you could always just go the store yourself.”
“A bad shopper is a bad shopper. My last order was by a woman and she gave me 2 gallons of milk expiring the next day,” said someone else.
“I will never ever feel comfortable about another person doing what I should be doing as a bare minimum (going to the store to buy food so I don’t starve),” another person tweeted.
The Independent has reached out to Instacart for comment.
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