Author Topic: convo @ food co-op  (Read 5272 times)

MinimalistMoustache

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convo @ food co-op
« on: April 28, 2014, 06:44:14 PM »
Yesterday, went to the local co-op for groceries, picked up about 3 extra produce items not on my list - but too luscious to pass up. Didn't anticipate purchasing more than 3 or 4 items and therefore only brought a small bag with me. The cashier and another employee were kidding around about getting everything into the one bag to save me an additional $.05 - lol. The total came to way less than expected. I jokingly told the guys that's what I get for going out on a produce spending spree.

Laughter stops - they both look at me puzzled.

Cashier:    Are you serious? This is nothing. The person before you just blew $400.
Me: Get out! Really?
Cashier:  and the person before her spent $700.
Me:  Man, they must have lots of mouths to feed.
Cashier:  Not really
Me:  Then, I must just be a cheapskate
Cashier:  No - but YOU will be able to retire.

:-)

naturelover

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Re: convo @ food co-op
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2014, 08:42:01 PM »
I was in Whole Foods recently purchasing two items, and I eyed the purchase of the shopper in front of me while I waited in line. She bought enough to fill about half of one of those stand-up style reusable bags, and her purchase was something like $107! I was dumbfounded as to how someone would fork over so much money for so little food.

Cromacster

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Re: convo @ food co-op
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2014, 08:58:55 PM »
Whenever I go to these types of places it seems like the ones who are spending wasting their money, it's usually on fruit or vegetable juices and deli items.  There was once a person in front of me who spent 70$ on various pomegranate and cranberry juices, all 20oz bottles.  But, who knows maybe there was a purpose for all the small bottles of juice.

mboulder

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Re: convo @ food co-op
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2014, 11:22:21 AM »
I live in a town that has three Whole Foods for something like 100,000 people, plus 3-4 other similar chain or independent stores. I have a friend who spends a ton of money there. She told me that good, healthy and high quality food for her and her family is extremely important to her. Her family is organic only, gluten-free and vegan. These sorts of specialty foods, like anything organic or gluten free breads, crackers and pasta are REALLY expensive at Whole Foods. The sad thing is that I found the exact same brands in the natural food isle of our local "working man's" grocery store (Kroger), so they can compete with Whole Foods et al, and many are cheaper, some by several dollars. She wasn't interested to hear it. That's when I realized that a big part of her food experience revolves around buying at a high-end grocery store. She grew up as one of the more poor people in one of the richest cities in the country, which makes me wonder about her psychology.

One of the big money sinks in Whole Foods is the food/salad bar. In the big store in my town that section is 1/3 of the store and I'd bet a huge part of their profit. I am always shocked how much salads are, or prepared items like sushi - it costs nearly as much (if not the same or more) as having it made fresh in a restaurant, and the restaurant tastes far better and fresher. And even worse, Whole Foods has this reputation of high quality, organic foods, but a lot of that is just marketing. Another friend of mine did some asking, and a lot of the prepared or salad/olive/food bar items aren't even organic, let alone non-GMO or whatever.

welliamwallace

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Re: convo @ food co-op
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2014, 08:40:22 AM »
THAT happened.

senecando

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Re: convo @ food co-op
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2014, 09:14:11 AM »
These sorts of specialty foods, like anything organic or gluten free breads, crackers and pasta are REALLY expensive at Whole Foods.

What is also organic, GF and vegan: organic vegetables, organic rice, beans, tofu etc.

I think WF gets its bad rap (and most of its profit) from the death trap that is the center of the store. I will admit to liking the rest of it quite a bit; it's not a discount place but it's not terrible. Cheapest bottled wine I've found, too.

ketchup

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Re: convo @ food co-op
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2014, 09:36:11 AM »
I think I spend a lot at Whole Foods when I'm there, but people LOVE the pre-chopped fruit at $8/lb, the really expensive juices as mentioned above, or the "hot" food that easily tops $10 for a mediocre salad.  That's how they'll drop $300 without blinking.  I'll fill two paper bags and have it be nowhere near $100 (even including expensive fancy meat/dairy). 

The "normal" stuff there (fresh produce, meat, dairy, spices, honey, oils/vinegars, canned vegetables, etc) is generally still more than elsewhere (some of it unavailable elsewhere, hence actually entering the store), but anything close to "prepared" is shockingly terrible.  And then there's other things that are crazy expensive for no reason like pine nuts.  You have to be careful.  I've gotten a pretty good intuition for what's OK to pick up "while I'm there", but I've gotten burned on that before.

sol

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Re: convo @ food co-op
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2014, 09:55:35 AM »
I'll fill two paper bags and have it be nowhere near $100 (even including expensive fancy meat/dairy). 

The perception of ridiculous spending is all relative.  I typically get like ten bags, enough for my family of five for a week, for $100.  I'm sure someone else here can't comprehend spending $100 on food in a month, and somewhere this a person who wouldn't dream of actually buying her own groceries.  That's what personal shoppers are for.

mboulder

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Re: convo @ food co-op
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2014, 10:00:37 AM »
One thing I've noticed about the Whole Foods in my town, being a big organic and natural foods-centric area: If I go to a Whole Foods a few towns over, the prices are noticeably cheaper on a lot of items. In fact, I've noticed that is the same for several chain natural food stores, produce especially is cheaper - half the cost in some cases - with a 10 or so mile extra drive. But I'll have to check out the raspberries; the prices for the clamshells, especially out of season, are ridiculously high, and after a lifetime of hating them, I became extremely addicted last year after snacking on a few that grow in my area.

Threshkin

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Re: convo @ food co-op
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2014, 08:27:54 PM »
One thing I've noticed about the Whole Foods in my town, being a big organic and natural foods-centric area: If I go to a Whole Foods a few towns over, the prices are noticeably cheaper on a lot of items. In fact, I've noticed that is the same for several chain natural food stores, produce especially is cheaper - half the cost in some cases - with a 10 or so mile extra drive. But I'll have to check out the raspberries; the prices for the clamshells, especially out of season, are ridiculously high, and after a lifetime of hating them, I became extremely addicted last year after snacking on a few that grow in my area.

We watch for the sales and then stock up when raspberries are under $1.00/ea.  We will buy 40+ boxes at a time.  Then just put the boxes in the deep freezer and they are good for as long as they last.  Full price the boxes are like $3.50/ea.  No way will I pay that much!

We do this with a lot of items that are too expensive at full price.  Sometimes we have to skip sales because there is no room in the freezer!  It hurt to only buy 4 whole salmon at $1.00/lb because I could not cram any more in.

Power shopping rocks but only if you pay attention to food management and avoid/eliminate spoilage loss.

kite

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Re: convo @ food co-op
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2014, 03:43:02 PM »
One thing I've noticed about the Whole Foods in my town, being a big organic and natural foods-centric area: If I go to a Whole Foods and few towns over, the prices are noticeably cheaper on a lot of items. In fact, I've noticed that is the same for several chain natural food stores, produce especially is cheaper - half the cost in some cases - with a 10 or so mile extra drive. But I'll have to check out the raspberries; the prices for the clamshells, especially out of season, are ridiculously high, and after a lifetime of hating them, I became extremely addicted last year after snacking on a few that grow in my area.

Hubby helped a friend build an addition onto their house over 20 years ago.   Addition went right where there was a raspberry patch.  They'd dug out the patch to pour the foundation and gave us 6 plants the we promptly planted in the yard of our rental.  Those berries have moved with us 2x, and now are in our/their permanent home.  If they grow where you live, grow them where you live.   We've got the "ever bearing" variety,  so we get a second harvest in the fall.  Raspberries,  cilantro and figs are things I love to eat, but hate to purchase.