I am not a real good shopper. I tend to over think the process a bit too much. I am OK when it comes to general shopping for a couple of specific items, but you can just about forget it when it comes to multiple lists and multiple stores.
I can safely say that in our area it seems like there is either a grocery store, gas station or a pharmacy on just about every corner. Heck, many of them have all three in the same shopping center. I am all for convenience, but I think that it is a bit crazy to have two separate grocery stores right next to each other. In a few centers, I could probably throw an apple from one grocery store to the next.
All fruit related drive by fruiting jokes aside, I stumbled across this great store that has a great selection of foods stored and sold in bulk. In the past I would just ignore the whole bulk food section altogether. Historically much of the stuff sold in bulk is the kind of stuff that I really do not enjoy eating, like trail mix, granola and hard candies.
I am a meat eating, non hiking, non granola, non Birkenstock regular kind of guy person. Dried bananas, oats and raisins don’t really cut it.
Until I started this little writing project, I never really thought about buying from the bulk food bins, but I have found out some pretty interesting facts about buying food from the bulk bins. The facts below are from the Bulk is Green Council. Click here Check them out at http://bulkisgreen.org/index.php and remember to get out there and Bulk-up.
• Bulk foods provide a savings to the consumer of 30% to 60%. Packaging and promotion can be a significant contributor to food cost.
• Bulk goods require less overall transportation to deliver to consumers. Bulk foods do not require the packaging components that must be produced and transported prior to being filled. And the transportation of bulk product to retailers is efficient because it can be packed more densely on a truck.”
• The manufacture of paper and cardboard pulls trees from our forests, dumps contaminated water into our streams and uses enormous amounts of energy resulting in grotesque levels of CO2 emissions pumped into our atmosphere.
• Food packaging may limit a consumer’s ability to buy in quantities desired which can result in food surplus and ultimately waste.
• Although most natural food companies sell their food products in recyclable packaging, there are still some food companies that use non-recyclable materials. And some consumers choose not to recycle which creates additional burden in our country’s landfills.
• Packaging often limits a consumer’s ability to actually see the product they are buying.
• In a grocery store, packaged products require more labor to ensure fresh product. Shelves must constantly be rearranged.
• With bulk, product density at the store level can be significantly higher. So stores can provide a wider variety of foods in the same space.