Do not charge until you ship


#1

@Soylent This board is full of people that have been charged, sometimes for two months, without having the product shipped to them. We can all understand the difficulties involved in the manufacturing process and all the other delays involved in producing Soylent. What is completely inexcusable is that you are charing before you ship the product.

If you don’t have enough product produced to ship to subscribers, don’t charge them until you do. It is that simple.


#2

YES. This product is not cheap, and people are trying to budget for their food supplies for the month. I actually signed up for Soylent as a means to save money on food. Having two months’ worth of my food budget now depleted with nothing having shipped is creating an extreme hardship for me. I can’t afford much in the way of groceries at this point, so I’m essentially going hungry. And no communication makes it impossible to plan anything.
@Soylent, we are not all multi-millionaires. How ironic that you talked about solving hunger problems and now you’re actually starving your paying customers.


#3

Aside from the hyperbole about multi-millionaires, I agree with the sentiment.

I especially like

Granted, Soylent is not cheap. It’s also not as expensive as a monthly food bill from the grocery store for comparable nutrition. The part that really stings is exactly what @thistle02 said-- that if you don’t get your product in a reasonable time frame, you’re simply unable to afford Soylent if you live on a budget.

With the recent influx in capital and planned growth of Rosa Labs, here’s to hoping that they have a fix for the shipping delays in the near term future.


#4

I shouldn’t nitpick, but that really depends on where you live. It’s definitely more expensive for me, an international customer who has to use a reshipper.

Regardless, the shipping issues need to be priority #1. Spending your monthly food budget on Soylent, then not having it delivered over 2 months later, is ridiculous.


#5

Same here. Of course, my current diet consists of 1/3 sugary cereal, 1/3 ramen noodles, and 1/3 other various garbage.

I bought Soylent to hopefully calm down some stomach and intestinal issues. But currently having to buy from eBay (still waiting for my first order!) makes it super expensive.

The way I currently see it is that it breaks down to roughly $3-4 a meal for Soylent. Not bad, but with $5 I can buy a big bag of cereal, enough for 6-8 meals. Not much of a monetary incentive to switch.


#6

As long as we’re nitpicking-- reshipping costs really aren’t part of the cost of Soylent itself. Reshipping is not universal to all customers. That’s a separate, additional cost that isn’t even charged by Rosa Labs, because of your physical location is outside of Rosa Lab’s distribution area.

It is part of your total cost, I freely admit. So for you, the total cost of Soylent is more expensive than comparable nutrition. (And reportedly, in some countries, the food stuff costs are low enough that Soylent is more expensive by itself. Although I’ve not seen anything but anecdotal claims on these forums, no unbiased studies or researches have confirmed those claims.)

They accepted kickstarter and crowdfunder contributions from international customers, and I don’t think it was made clear to those backers that there would be additional costs they would need to incur for international shipping (above and beyond the basic cost of shipping internationally being more expensive than shipping within the US.) But, what do I know? I’m an ecommerce customer that came on board in June, 2014.

FWIW I agree international shipping is something that needs to get worked out ASAP.

Along with lowering the overall cost of Soylent itself.


#7

Before Soylent, I was eating out a lot because I don’t live in a situation where it’s easy for me to cook (and I’m terrible at it anyway). I’ve struggled with trying to eat healthy for my whole life, and this is honestly the best solution I’ve found that works for me. And when I worked out my food budget, Soylent actually saves me money in the long-run. But it’s also a big lump sum of cash coming out of my account all at once as opposed to small amounts in grocery bills and eating out would be.
So it’s something I specifically set aside money for. Having it taken out with no food coming in is a HUGE problem. I’ve now gone from feeling the healthiest I’ve ever felt in my life to completely crashing and barely scrounging to live on pb&j sandwiches and ramen and feeling like crap. My other bills are being affected by this as well.
This is why open communication is so important here. Buying @Soylent is not the same as a magazine subscription where if you don’t get the latest magazine, you won’t know the latest beauty tips or something. It’s FOOD, something people depend on to live and manage their health. This is unacceptable.


#8

But then we can’t all act as a source of free investment capital!


#9

I agree that they could communicate better, but RL is a startup facing incredible demand. There’s going to be hiccups, even for resubscribers. It’s a very experimental company at this point, so if you want steady and stable you should probably wait until they mature and can provide on-demand orders for everybody to ensure no reorder issues.

I’m not going to bash them. They’ve done right in the past so I’m confident they’ll do well in the future.


#10

Orders exceeding production, supply chain issues, and other “hiccups” are out of their control, and can be excused. Billing subscriptions (sometimes for two months in a row) is entirely within their control and is not excusable.

It is real easy: if supply exists to fulfill a subscription, bill it and ship it; if it doesn’t, pause the subscription until the supply catches up. There is absolutely no reason it should be any other way.


#11

Last week I received a crock-pot. It was really easy to make beef stew. Lasts me about four days. Still pretty healthy. It’s cheaper than Soylent.

Last month I received a $200 gift card for Schwan’s. Got enough food to last me over a month. I still have a bunch of food. Still cheaper than Soylent.

Just saying.


#12

Okay. All that is cheaper. I can believe that. But are they as healthy as Soylent? If not, I’m not sure what your “just saying” is supposed to accomplish.


#13

Some people seem to act as though Soylent is cost-efficient in general, which it really isn’t. For what it offers, yes, but if you just need to survive, it can be pretty expensive.


#14

Yes, regular food is just as healthy. What I mean is that if you don’t like the way Soylent is doing business regular food is just as cheap and easy.


#15

This excuse was acceptable at the start, but it’s really starting to wear thin. I can understand supply takes time to ramp up, but they have persistent billing and shipping issues, and terrible, just godawful communication. They’ve been operating for close to a year now(?) They’ve had millions in funding. FFS, hire some more help.


#16

Not in general, no. I don’t know of any other food that is singularly as nutritious as Soylent. Eating healthy costs more then just eating to survive. You can eat cheaper for similar nutrition if you make most of your own food yourself, but most people don’t do that. So in general, Soylent is usually healthier and/or cheaper than the way most people eat.

@Larry, I agree. Soylent is cost efficient in comparison to many diets, but it’s certainly not cheap yet. I look forward to the day that it is.


#17

It’s all relative. I’m sure they’ve been hiring help for quite a while, but if their demand is growing exponentially, they can’t just fix that overnight–especially if they’re limited by funds. Businesses usually have the leisure to grow at a steady pace, but RL have that courtesy with all the demand.


#18

I agree. It’s different handling reorder customers. The long wait for new customers is to ensure that the reorder customers can receive a steady supply and it seems that an entire half-year should be enough time to calculate supply and demand. That was the whole point in the long wait in the beginning.

They should have hired more help much sooner. It should have been a steady influx of hiring more and more as funds kept piling in. Worse came to worse, they could always delay the new customers a little more. It sucked when that happened to me but I let it slide because I knew they paid their dues already.


#19

Judging by the mass email Soylent just sent out to customers, this sort of problem will soon be a thing of the past.

Hang in there.


#20

UPDATE: I finally received an email with my tracking number, and fingers crossed I should be getting my shipment tomorrow. I’m still pretty disillusioned with the way this last month has gone down and how the customer service was handled. But, I’m unfortunately hooked on the product now, so until a better alternative comes along, I’ll just have to hold on and and hope that they really do get better.

I will say that I don’t really get the point of saying that you can get real food for cheaper than Soylent. Obviously this is true. But a major problem comes in when the company charges you for the product and doesn’t deliver leaving you with no money to buy that real food. It’s a moot point to say real food is cheaper. If we wanted real food, we wouldn’t be trying to buy Soylent.

Anyway, I hope everyone else’s issues get resolved soon. It is a major bummer to wait over a month for a subscription to be fulfilled and almost as long to even get the courtesy of a response from the company about it. I really really hope they get it together soon.