Pay day cheer at Asda spilled out into the Cheshire store where a group of staff blocked the fruit and veg aisles as their pay slips were handed out.
The group then remained there for several minutes swapping jokes before dispersing, to the further irritation of our busy shopper.
The store was on target to beat the cheapest full basket in the history of The Grocer 33 ­ £35.90 from Asda in Havant, last week.
However, bananas and mushrooms failed to show on the receipt, robbing the store of a record £35.65 basket. The crown was claimed by Sainsbury at £38.80.
The United Co-op in Blyth provided a full basket at under £40 and earned third place for store performance. In Scotland the Co-op store offered six deals but the shine was taken off by five out of stocks.
Our late night shopper in Morrisons faced teams of stackers driven by supervisors counting down deadlines for each section.
This made for a difficult shop which became positively tiresome when only five of the 28 tills remained open. Our shopper in Tesco, Shoreham, said the store had packaging debris lying around.
Safeway's store in Abergavenny was this week's star performer and in stark contrast to its Totnes counterpart where weighing machines were down and the till operator "too tired" to greet our shopper.