Evol Teriyaki Chicken

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  • #1
ZapperZ
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I suppose this might qualify as a "product claim", considering that it is based on what's on the box.

Before we go any further, let's clarify something. I'm not naive enough to expect a food product to look exactly like what's in the box. I've bought enough stuff to know that they often don't. However, I do expect to receive roughly what was advertized, and there should be some resemblance of it. Otherwise, the package is severely misleading or outright wrong.

That's what happened here. I bought a rather expensive frozen meal that is all natural (no preservatives), gluten free (not that I have a problem with gluten), and with low fat and low calories, y'know, trying to make sure I eat properly when I am in a rush and don't have time to cook for myself.

The product is by a company called Evol Foods, and it is their Teriyaki Chicken. The box shows large pieces of broccoli, snow peaks, carrots, bell peppers on a bed of brown rice, drizzled with teriyaki sauce. It looks vibrant and fresh.

eynz.jpg


When you open the package and microwave it as instructed, this is what you get!

fgjc.jpg


And here's the comparison between the box and the actual product.

6fv5.jpg


I'm sorry, but the actual product looks like dog food! It is overcooked, it looks icky and depressing! There were a few small pieces of broccoli, almost all of them no bigger than the size of my fingernail! There was also hardly any teriyaki sauce on it (look at the photo). In other words, there was nothing vibrant and appetizing at all about this thing, and it does not resemble, even remotely, the photo on the box.

This was the first time I bought the product from this company, and needless to say, it was the last. And some of you who know me know that I don't just get mad, I also get even. I've written to the company to complain about what I got for what I paid for. I'm waiting to hear from them before I send the photos to Consumer Reports for their Goofs, Glitches, and Gotchas section.

Thanks for letting me vent.

Zz.
 
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  • #2
micromass
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the product is by a company called evol foods, and it is their teriyaki chicken. The box shows large pieces of broccoli, snow peaks, carrots, bell peppers on a bed of brown rice, drizzled with teriyaki sauce. It looks vibrant and fresh.

bad evo!
 
  • #3
Ripley
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Did you eat it?

It looks absolutely vile, and has that awful unhealthy beige tone to it.

I wouldn't even recommend you writing to the company as you'll just receive free products.
 
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  • #4
micromass
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I would even recommend you writing to the company as you'll just receive free products.

Not sure if you want free products from the company...
 
  • #5
Ripley
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Ah it was meant to say wouldn't! Will edit now.
 
  • #6
Evo
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Hey, I had no idea these people were selling such a low quality product when I allowed them to cash in one my fame.

Zz, that looks ghastly, I'd consider it fraudulent advertising.

I've had many similar product experiences where the picture on the package constitutes outright fraud, IMO. Marie Calendar's pot pies were shocking, I decided to indulge in one last year, a chicken pot pie, I wrote about it it was so bad. The only resemblance to the picture on the box was that the actual product did have a crust.

Just ate a Marie Callendar's microwaved chicken pot pie. On a scale of 1 to 10, I'd give it a 1.5. The crust turned out great, but the crust was the only thing worth eating. When I broke through the top crust, the pie was empty except for a bit of white sauce, 2 tiny carrot rounds, one of which was soggy and chewy, 5 peas and two pieces of chicken at the bottom. Although it was salted, it had no flavor at all. None. If I had been blindfolded, I would not have been able to tell you that it was supposed to be chicken it had no chicken flavor. Bland, tasteless, almost no product. Will never buy another.
 
  • #7
Evo
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Wow, found a lot of bad reviews of this evol brand food.
 
  • #8
ZapperZ
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Did you eat it?

It looks absolutely vile, and has that awful unhealthy beige tone to it.

I wouldn't even recommend you writing to the company as you'll just receive free products.

I ate half of it, and threw out the rest. It didn't taste bad, but it was really bland (not enough teriyaki sauce), and the veggies were mushy, which is the worst thing you can do to vegetables. I prefer them raw than overcooked.

I wrote to them, as is my standard practice when I complain about a product, or to a restaurant, I will refuse any complimentary offers, because I believe my complaint has more credibility when I refuse such freebies. I complained not to get free stuff, but rather I felt that I wasn't getting what I thought I should, or I didn't get what I felt was worth the money I paid for. In this case, it was both.

Zz.
 
  • #9
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Wow, found a lot of bad reviews of this evol brand food.

Maybe I should have checked first before I bought it, but I was browsing the freezer isle at the local supermarket and thought I'd give it a try. Luckily, I only bought one to test.

I much prefer the frozen food I get at Trader Joe's.

Zz.
 
  • #10
lisab
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Maybe I should have checked first before I bought it, but I was browsing the freezer isle at the local supermarket and thought I'd give it a try. Luckily, I only bought one to test.

I much prefer the frozen food I get at Trader Joe's.

Zz.

Trader Joe's is good, I agree. I also like Amy's (Light & Lean Spinach Lasagna or Palak Paneer are my favorites) and Kashi (Lemongrass Coconut Chicken or Chicken Pasta Pomodoro -pretty good!).
 
  • #11
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Trader Joe's is good, I agree. I also like Amy's (Light & Lean Spinach Lasagna or Palak Paneer are my favorites) and Kashi (Lemongrass Coconut Chicken or Chicken Pasta Pomodoro -pretty good!).

I buy Amy's Indian foods and both Kashi's frozen meals regularly. So I'm very familiar with those already. I should have just stuck to those.

In any case, I received a response from the company:

Evol said:
First of all, thank you for taking the time to contact EVOL Foods with your feedback.

We regret that you had a negative experience with our Teriyaki Chicken. Thank you for providing the packaging coding so our Quality Control Department can look into this further.

We are aware that our packaging picture and size does not always match perfectly with the product inside. We make each of our products by hand and unfortunately that means sometimes the toppings aren't perfectly spread or don't look exactly like our packing. We are continuously improving these products and we keep track of the specific products so that we can make specific changes to the artwork or to the manufacturing process itself. All of our photos on the boxes are actual pictures of the product, but they are styled. There's no fake food, but it did take some time to arrange the cheese pieces perfectly, etc., and that is just not feasible in production. We just want to show our consumers the highlights of that particular product.

We hope you will give us another chance. We are sending you a coupon for a free EVOL Foods® product of your choice. As part of our commitment to continuous improvement, we're also sharing your comments with the appropriate people within our organization.


Thanks!

EVOL Foods Consumer Relations
www.evolfoods.com
201-421-3970

I have replied to this one and told them that it has nothing to do with trying to get exactly what's on the package. I have bought plenty of frozen meals from Trader Joe's and Kashi, and they all don't look exactly like the package. But in this case, the disparity was just too much! And this time, since it was via e-mail, I attached these photos for them to look for themselves.

I wanted to say, but I didn't, that I'd like to see them take what I got, and "stylize" them to resemble close to what they got in the package! See if they can find more than just one stalk of broccoli in the meal, or a non-overcooked snow peas as vibrant as the one on the package. They can take as much time as they want to stylize what I got, and it will still not be anywhere close to the picture on the package!

I also told them not to send me any coupons. I won't be buying their products anymore.

Zz.
 
  • #12
Evo
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I can't wait for them to see the pictures! I wonder if they will still respond "it did take some time to arrange the cheese pieces perfectly". Oh PULEASE.
 
  • #13
Astronuc
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I suppose this might qualify as a "product claim", considering that it is based on what's on the box.

Before we go any further, let's clarify something. I'm not naive enough to expect a food product to look exactly like what's in the box. I've bought enough stuff to know that they often don't. However, I do expect to receive roughly what was advertized, and there should be some resemblance of it. Otherwise, the package is severely misleading or outright wrong.

That's what happened here. I bought a rather expensive frozen meal that is all natural (no preservatives), gluten free (not that I have a problem with gluten), and with low fat and low calories, y'know, trying to make sure I eat properly when I am in a rush and don't have time to cook for myself.

The product is by a company called Evol Foods, and it is their Teriyaki Chicken. The box shows large pieces of broccoli, snow peaks, carrots, bell peppers on a bed of brown rice, drizzled with teriyaki sauce. It looks vibrant and fresh.

And here's the comparison between the box and the actual product.

6fv5.jpg


I'm sorry, but the actual product looks like dog food! It is overcooked, it looks icky and depressing! There were a few small pieces of broccoli, almost all of them no bigger than the size of my fingernail! There was also hardly any teriyaki sauce on it (look at the photo). In other words, there was nothing vibrant and appetizing at all about this thing, and it does not resemble, even remotely, the photo on the box.

This was the first time I bought the product from this company, and needless to say, it was the last. And some of you who know me know that I don't just get mad, I also get even. I've written to the company to complain about what I got for what I paid for. I'm waiting to hear from them before I send the photos to Consumer Reports for their Goofs, Glitches, and Gotchas section.

Thanks for letting me vent.

Zz.
I wouldn't feed that to our dog, but I'd probably eat it myself. It's certainly not evident that there is broccoli in that dish.

Generally, I've experienced insubstantial amounts of vegetables in such dishes. If they advertise some special vegetables like snap peas, asparagus or the like, there is very little of those in the meal.

I've found it easier to by the ingredients, e.g., diced chicken, baby corn, carrots, beans, broccoli florets, etc, and my the dish myself.
 
  • #14
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I paid a visit to the almighty Google, and found the following:

http://evolfoods.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/MultiServe_TeriyakiChicken.jpg

and

http://dogchow.s3.amazonaws.com/product/DogChow_End.jpg.

Any similarities in packaging are, I'm sure, purely coincidental.

I also found this [URL="http://lifeisbumpy.wordpress.com/2012/07/02/evol-foods-teriyaki-chicken-bowl/"]blog[/URL], where there are pictures that look a lot more recognizable as actual food than what Zz posted. I wonder if the company was bought out.

Amusing fact: they use only "non-GMO chickens". I assume that means only wild red junglefowl, as 7000 years of selecting breeding and hybridization has certainly modified the chicken's genome.
 
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  • #15
Evo
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Yes, the company was purchased a year after that blog to a company known as Boulder brands. It seems the food has gone downhill.
 
  • #16
Monique
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This was the first time I bought the product from this company, and needless to say, it was the last. And some of you who know me know that I don't just get mad, I also get even. I've written to the company to complain about what I got for what I paid for. I'm waiting to hear from them before I send the photos to Consumer Reports for their Goofs, Glitches, and Gotchas section.
That looks horrible! Don't buy prefab meals that you can't see the contents of!

Can't you buy a package of frozen cut veggies? That way you always have something in the freezer for instant healthy meals.
 
  • #17
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It seems the food has gone downhill.

To the dogs, perhaps?
 
  • #19
ZapperZ
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That looks horrible! Don't buy prefab meals that you can't see the contents of!

Can't you buy a package of frozen cut veggies? That way you always have something in the freezer for instant healthy meals.

I normally have fresh vegetables at home, and frozen peas/green beans. Most of the time, I don't eat frozen dinner such as this because I tend to cook and prepare fresh meals. But when I'm in a hurry, I tend to go for these frozen meals. I've had good success with Kashi and Trader Joe's, and I happened to see this teriyaki chicken while browsing the freezer aisle. So I thought I'd try it.

I just didn't know that the content looked nowhere near what was advertised on the box.

Zz.
 
  • #20
Evo
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I normally have fresh vegetables at home, and frozen peas/green beans. Most of the time, I don't eat frozen dinner such as this because I tend to cook and prepare fresh meals. But when I'm in a hurry, I tend to go for these frozen meals. I've had good success with Kashi and Trader Joe's, and I happened to see this teriyaki chicken while browsing the freezer aisle. So I thought I'd try it.

I just didn't know that the content looked nowhere near what was advertised on the box.

Zz.
That chicken looked like roadkill.
 
  • #21
dlgoff
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Roadkill would probably be fresher.
 
  • #22
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Roadkill would probably be fresher.
And look more appetizing.
 
  • #23
AlephZero
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DogChow_End.jpg
.

Any similarities in packaging are, I'm sure, purely coincidental.

In the sense that the dog chow doesn't look anything like recycled dog and human remains ?
 
  • #24
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In the sense that the dog chow doesn't look anything like recycled dog and human remains ?
Yeah, the dog chow looks much better and probably has better quality control.
 
  • #25
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Got a response to my email to them where I attached the photos that I showed here:

Thank you for providing the photos, we have forwarded them to Quality Control.

Hopefully, that is the end of that and I'm sticking to Trader Joes and Kashi.

Zz.
 
  • #26
Chronos
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I like Banquet. Cooked, it looks just like the picture on the box. Not as much meat, but, I can't complain. I lost interest in commercial dog food after reading about rendering plants and the pet food industry. I make 3 cups of dog food for about a buck using human grade chicken and rice. My dog appears grateful.
 
  • #27
ZapperZ
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I tell ya, I am subconsciously psychic! :)

The June 2014 issue of Consumer Reports has, on Pg. 12, the sequel to the "Picture vs. Product" section, where they showed items that are pale imitation of what was shown on the box.

Many of these are more related to the size of the items than anything else. In fact, in the my-pain-is-worse-than-yours category, I find that most of the food they listed had closer resemblance to what was on the box than my Evol Chicken Teriyaki, with the exception of possibly the Grain Berry.

Zz.
 
  • #28
Ben Niehoff
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It looks about how I would expect, to be honest.

The product is by a company called Evol Foods, and it is their Teriyaki Chicken. The box shows large pieces of broccoli, snow peaks, carrots, bell peppers on a bed of brown rice, drizzled with teriyaki sauce. It looks vibrant and fresh.

There is a "vibrance" adjustment slider in Photoshop for achieving precisely that effect. Maybe they could rename it "freshness". :biggrin:

More seriously, though, it's nearly impossible to get cooked food to look that bright. With broccoli especially, you have a narrow window of time of about 2 seconds between "underdone" and "wilting and discolored". Achieving a plate of food with that appearance is the purvey of master chefs, not mass-produced frozen food factories. And even if it was perfect in the box, your microwaving could have easily overdone it.

P.S. The plate in the photograph is probably a wax model and not actual food. At best it's food sprayed with a coat of resin or something, so it will maintain its appearance under hot lights throughout the photographic process.
 
  • #29
Ben Niehoff
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Behold, the power of color correction! I can't make your picture less blurry, though.

attachment.php?attachmentid=69492&stc=1&d=1399412841.jpg


Nice green broccoli and orange carrots! :biggrin:

Of course, to get good color, you have to capture good color in the first place. There's only so much I can do with a photo that's got low saturation and a yellow cast.
 

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  • #30
1MileCrash
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I find any type of frozen food that instructs you to microwave will likely come out terribly.

However, the "skillet" frozen meals are pretty good, honestly.

0001380011017_500X500.jpg


When I buy these it comes out just as good as one can reasonably hope (IE, there are actually full pieces of broccoli that are green). Maybe I have one in my freezer now. I don't find throwing something into a hot skillet to be any real work, really.
 
  • #31
1MileCrash
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Behold, the power of color correction! I can't make your picture less blurry, though.

attachment.php?attachmentid=69492&stc=1&d=1399412841.jpg


Nice green broccoli and orange carrots! :biggrin:

Of course, to get good color, you have to capture good color in the first place. There's only so much I can do with a photo that's got low saturation and a yellow cast.

There is no saving that gelatinous chicken, though.
 
  • #32
Evo
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Next time I open my frozen General Tsao's chicken, I will post a photo, you won't believe how it is packed with whole snow pea pods, bell peppers, large, even chunks of chicken, it's beautiful.
 
  • #33
ZapperZ
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Behold, the power of color correction! I can't make your picture less blurry, though.

attachment.php?attachmentid=69492&stc=1&d=1399412841.jpg


Nice green broccoli and orange carrots! :biggrin:

Of course, to get good color, you have to capture good color in the first place. There's only so much I can do with a photo that's got low saturation and a yellow cast.

Unfortunately, this was NOT what you get when you actually microwave this thing. The colors are NOT that vibrant, and the broccoli are not that green. And in total, there was only ONE (count 'em) stalk of broccoli in the whole dish. The rest were just the very tip of the florets.

You are welcome to buy one of these yourself and verify what I said. What I got was closer to the photo that I had shown. The vibrant color of your photo is extremely misleading when compared to what one actually get.

Zz.
 
  • #34
Evo
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Even with the fake color, it still looks terrible, I would not eat it. You maybe got one small broccoli floret if you stuck all of the little pieces together...maybe.
 

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