You may have noticed that more and more supermarkets have instituted a policy that customers say is just 'shucking' ridiculous.

Supermarket shopping isn't quite as fun as it used to be. Between inflation and inventory issues, finding exactly what you want for a reasonable price isn't very easy. Now, it appears that many New York supermarkets have decided to anger long-time customers even more by instituting a new rule that many say is frustrating.

I first noticed this new policy at the beginning of the summer when shopping for a barbecue. While I was in the produce section I saw a huge bin of corn on the cob that had been freshly delivered. While selecting which ears I was going to bring home I noticed a sign warning customers of the new rule.

A. Boris
A. Boris

The sign indicated that shucking corn in the store was now strictly prohibited.

For years, almost every grocery store would put out a large garbage bin that let customers take care of the messy chore of shucking their corn in the store. Not only did this make prep easier at home, but it also allowed shoppers to figure out if the corn they were buying was rotten inside or not.

Why is corn shucking not permitted in stores?

It's unclear why stores have decided to suddenly outlaw the practice of shucking corn, but it's become quite more common this summer. Several stores throughout the Hudson Valley now have a "no shucking" policy in effect.

Some corn experts claim that shucking the cobs too soon before cooking makes them dry out, but that really depends on the type of corn that's being purchased. Most of the corn sold at grocery stores is bred to retain moisture, and shucking a few hours earlier has little effect on quality.


It appears that this may just be another one of those holdovers from COVID that hasn't gone away. Much like being shamed into tipping for pickup orders at a restaurant, the inability to shuck your corn was common during the pandemic. Not wanting customers huddled next to each other around the corn bin, stores forbid the practice. It's likely that after realizing that they had less to clean up, stores got used to the rule and just decided to keep it in place.

How can you tell if corn is rotten without shucking it?

If you can't shuck your corn, how can you tell if it's rotten or not? Experts say to look for firm ears of corn with white or light brown silk sticking out of the top. If the silk is black or dried up, the corn is likely old.

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We want to know how you feel about shucking corn in the store. Do you like being able to peel the corn before purchasing it or do you prefer to wait until you get home? Let us know what you think by sending us a text on our mobile app or commenting on our Facebook page.

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