Disappearing Gardenburgers

I love Gardenburger-brand veggie burgers. They don’t try to taste like meat, which I think is a good thing. Instead of fake, tough meat-substitute, you get a clean-tasting patty with discernable bits of rice and other tender veggies. They come in nine varieties, some of which are vegan (but my favorites—the original and portabella flavors—do contain some cheese). I have kept them in the freezer for nights when we fire up the grill or need a quick supper, I've ordered them at restaurants (Astro Burger back in Los Angeles does a sublime messy version with shredded lettuce, sliced tomato, and lots of mayonnaise), and I’ve thrown a two-pack in my purse to take along to backyard cookouts so I can fit in more easily and not freak out the host about needing to come up with a meatless alternative. I’ve been a really loyal Gardenburger fan for a long, long time. But lately, I’m having trouble finding them. They seem to be systematically disappearing from supermarkets. They used to be available at Target on Overton Ridge, and now they’re not. And I could swear I’ve bought them at Albertson’s on Hulen, but they’re nowhere to be found now. Fearing my supply would be cut off, I contacted the company to make sure that the Gardenburger brand is still alive and kicking. Here’s what they had to say:Mrs. Meyn, Thanks for letting us know about your difficulty in locating Gardenburger® Gardenburger. We understand it is very frustrating when you cannot purchase a product you enjoy. While we strive to have all of our products widely available, retailers have limited shelf space and often discontinue items that sell at lower volumes. We have searched the information available to us and found the following retailers have sold the product recently. We are including the store phone number, as some of the stores may not be in close proximity to your home, so you may wish to call in advance to see if the product is currently in stock.

TOM THUMB  3100 S HULEN ST FORT WORTH TX 76109  (817) 570-2950

TOM THUMB  4700 BRYANT IRVIN RD FORT WORTH TX 76132  (817) 294-9588

TOM THUMB  6377 CAMP BOWIE BLVD FORT WORTH TX 76116  (817) 654-0256

We appreciate your loyalty to our company and invite you to try one of our many other great tasting products that are readily available in your area. Sincerely, Lizeth Leon Consumer Affairs Department

In the meantime, my husband brought home a box of Morningstar Farms Garden Veggie Patties, and it turns out that they’re pretty good, too.