Pam Haynie was already wary when the door-to-door meat salesman told her that he closed every sale with a hug.
“I said, ‘Oh no, don’t give me a hug,’” Haynie, 64, recalled of the encounter earlier this summer at her Midwest City home. That’s when she said the salesman forced her into an embrace, then left her with four boxes of meat she said is too rancid to even feed her dogs.
Several recent incidents involving door-to-door meat sellers have raised concerns among some Oklahoma City area residents and prompted a handful of consumer complaints.
A spokesman for the Better Business Bureau said while many such door-to-door meat sellers are reputable, he advised prudence.
“We always caution a consumer to find out as much information as they possibly can about the business before spending money with the business,” said Robbie Namee, trade practice specialist with the BBB covering South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas and Iowa. “You always need to be cautious and check out the business before you do business with them.”
Haynie said she was doing yard work when she heard a man yell, “Hey, I need to ask you something.”
“I thought he wanted to know where an address was,” she said.
After doing a U-turn and parking, Haynie said the man asked her “Do you eat steaks?” She said yes.
That’s when he hopped out of his company truck, opened up a side door and went on a spiel about the company, Rancher’s Pride LLC, she said.
The salesman offered Haynie a box of steaks for $450, she said.
After haggling, Haynie said she bought four boxes of steaks for $100 from the salesman, whose name was Mike according to her receipt.
Haynie said she declined his offer to put the boxes in her garage. She said he insisted.
She said he told her he thought it would be cooler in the garage. Haynie told him it wouldn’t and demanded they stay where they were.
Haynie said the salesman’s odd behavior continued when he showed her his driver’s license and launched into a lengthy story about what he went through to obtain it.
Haynie said she had to cut him off in an attempt to hurry along the visit and get out of the hot weather.
“He gave me a weird feeling,” Haynie said.
The meat remains untouched in her freezer because of its toughness and a strange, yellow color, she said.
Attempts to reach Rancher’s Pride for comment were unsuccessful.
In early July, two men driving through Edmond area neighborhoods in a white van drew residents’ suspicions.
One woman, in fear for her life, ran inside her house and locked the door when one of the men allegedly walked aggressively toward her.