This is not a Halloween joke, as you expected. Walmart and Star Legacy Funeral Network, Inc have partnered to supply Walmart customers with a rather macabre range of products: coffins, urns and memorial jewelry. These will be sold at walmart.com starting this October. Caskets are only shipped in the US, and they are not available to all areas. But as spokesman Ravi Jariwala says, this is a “limited beta test to understand customer response.” Since the most probable customers for such items will be dead or close to it , I assume the test will go well and soon the availability issues will be solved.
Prices for the caskets already been “rolled back” – from $999.00USD as originally advertised, a Lady de Guadalupe Steel Casket is now $895.00USD, and this is not the only budget option offered by Walmart.com. White Haven Steel Casket, Dad Remembered Steel Casket and Mom Remembered Steel Casket are sold for the same $895.00USD. The most expensive casket is the Sienna Bronze Casket, hand-crafted (in the hills of China no doubt), with lush velvet interior – a bargain (!) at $2,899.00USD.
Well, if you ever wondered what else Walmart could do to virtually own you, this is obviously the next step. “From the cradle to the grave”, as someone once said, pretty much covers what this corporation is about. I just wonder about the “money back guarantee” on caskets and urns? Oh, they won’t take them back once they are used (just read that in the literature). Well, I guess next we will see pine boxes offered at the Dollar Store, Dollar General, and K Mart (if they are still in business). I can see it now, a huge “K” on the side of every unit.
As far as I am concerned, Walmart is free to sell everything from pins to rocket fuses to AK 47’s, this is not the point. What disturbs me is the way they market this new addition to the product line, a detail nobody seems to notice: they call it a “beta test.” To define, a beta test is the second phase of testing in which a sampling of the intended audience tries the product out.
I suspect Walmart already hired John Edward to interview the intended audience after they “tried the product out.” I can already see him: “Is your Walmart coffin comfortable?” to which the dead replies “What, they got me a Walmart casket? Those cheap bastards!”