A couple have been left piping hot with fury after a Morrisons store said there would be a 15-minute wait to buy meat pies.
Linda and Tony Gilkes say their local Morrisons refused to sell Linda meat pies before 9am.
“I wanted eight large sausage rolls and two steak bakes,” said the 62-year-old grandmother-of-four.
“It was 8.45am and there were no pies at all displayed.
“I could see bags and bags of pies, all wrapped up on cages behind the counter. The trolley was ready to be pushed out.
“But when I asked for the pies, I was told: 'We cant sell the pies until 9am.' I could have had a fruit pie, but not a meat pie.”
A queue of five other confused customers formed at the Oven Fresh counter at the store in Berwick Hills, Middlesbrough, to demand their pastry fix last Wednesday.
But staff were determined to abide pie the rules, telling customers the store had a new no meat pies before 9am policy.
“If they hadnt been cooked, that would make sense,” said Linda, from Thorntree in Middlesbrough. “But the fact that they were baked, well – its ridiculous.
“If I couldve reached over, I would have grabbed them myself.
“I wasnt waiting 20 minutes so I went to Cooplands. I was disappointed to say the least.”
She added: “They are dictating to me when I can buy pies and when I can shop.”
Husband Tony, who eats fish and chips three days a week and rarely touches pastry, branded the decision “stupid”.
The 76-year-old said: “When youre faced with that situation at the counter, you start thinking: Is it Candid Camera? Is it April Fools Day?
“You can have fruit pies, but you cant have meat pies!
“We have always been able to get the pies before 9am. The decision makes no sense. I cant see any logic.”
Morrisons told the Teesside Gazette there is no “hard and fast policy” and meat pies are simply baked for 9am to match customer demand.
But Tony suggested a more sinister explanation.
“Theres more to this,” he said. “Morrisons have got their own agenda.
“They dont want people to know about it. They have given too many ridiculous stories about why. They contradicted themselves over and over.
“Who do they think us customers are? We are the people paying their wages.”
The supermarket chain, with 500 stores up and down the UK, has now swallowed a piece of humble pie and issued an apology to the couple for the mi-steak.
A spokesman said: “It appears that in this case we should have sold the customer their pies.
“We apologise for any inconvenience it might have caused.”