Complaints pile up about parking lot meat

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LANSING, MI (WILX) - You may have seen the big white tents in mall parking lots advertising 20 rib eye steaks for $30.

The company, Homestead Steaks, set up shop in the Lansing Mall and Meridian Mall parking lots, but when News 10 went to check it out Tuesday, they were nowhere to be found.

The tent-based operation received an F rating from the Better Business Bureau.

Customers have described the meat as "grisly," and "foul smelling."

Another claims he was charged $289 for the $25 box of meat.

"Often times, what happens is when a customer gets there, they'll try to up-sell you to a much larger meat package which is somewhere around $200 in a lot of cases," said Troy Baker with the Better Business Bureau of Western Michigan.

In a statement, Homestead Steaks said, "We have been in business for over 12 years, our complaint percentage is probably less than your leading grocery store or any other retail store in your area."

When buying something from a temporary shop, the BBB suggests being aware of their return policy.

"In the case of Homestead Steaks, it's three days to the tent you got it. So if they say we're packing up tomorrow and leaving, how are you going to return that product to them if the tent is no longer there?" asks Baker.

The state Department of Agriculture says Homestead Steaks meets food safety standards.

The quality of the meat is federally regulated.

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