Gift baskets can be easy to give and fun to receive! But will the goodies you think you are ordering actually be what the recipient gets? Consumer Reports ordered 25 gift baskets -- costing about $100 -- from five popular companies to find out.
“We found a really wide selection of foods, like specialty pasta and premium sauces, chocolate delights and high-end breakfast goodies,” said Linda Green, Consumer Reports’ Test Program Leader.
Two companies, Mouth and Knack give the option to create a custom basket. Knack and Gourmet Gift Baskets cater not just to food choice but to ethos.
“The gift message itself mentions that all the items were made by women-owned businesses, and to me that just makes it extra special,” said a Consumer Reports staffer.
Olive & Cocoa’s wares come in a wooden box. Harry and David sent one order in a small trunk...
“Really kind of cool, certainly re-usable,” said another Consumer Reports staffer.
But, what if something in your order goes wrong?
With Harry & David, three of the four gift baskets Consumer Reports ordered arrived with bruised pears.
“As you can see the pears, nine of them came in damaged,” noted Consumer Reports Staffer James Rogers.
When contacted, Harry & David promptly sent replacement pears, and one person who requested chocolate instead received it the following day.
In the end, Mouth made the senders and receivers happy, citing the ability to create your own gift for the recipient.
Knack was favored for its “high quality” offerings at a range of prices. But some senders grumbled about spending $10 extra for the non-optional packaging, but the gift receivers appreciated the presentation.
So, is what you see what you get? Consumer Reports says none of the gifts arrived looking exactly like the highly styled web images. But nearly all the senders thought that what was delivered closely matched, and there were few substitutions.