Which Supermarket are you?

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Luis94r
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Which Supermarket are you?

Post by Luis94r » Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:55 am

What supermarkets do you Boggleheads go to and do most of your grocery shopping. Do you believe in the Organic hype and only shop at Whole Foods or do you go to Trader Joes for the cheaper alternative?

Looking at making a decision on what supermarket i should ultimately be shopping at.
-Lou

livesoft
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by livesoft » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:00 am

I do not believe the organic hype. I shop at Kroger's, Walmart, HEB, Trader Joe's and wherever. The key criteria is convenience, so which store is closest to me gets my business. I do not buy in bulk either because I buy so little and so fresh that bulk doesn't make any sense at all. For instance, I don't buy anything that has to be kept in the freezer.
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cheese_breath
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by cheese_breath » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:02 am

Price and location are my primary concerns although I occasionally need to go to Whole Foods to get DWs dairy free pudding.
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sometimesinvestor
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by sometimesinvestor » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:04 am

Can I picka less expensive choice or are the two named the only ones under consideration.I agree with livesoft though I attend supermarkets not yet named and don't mind using the freezer . i.e location is the key factor
Last edited by sometimesinvestor on Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

mouses
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by mouses » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:05 am

Dave's Market, which is a local Rhode Island chain with several locations.

When I lived in California, I shopped at Whole Foods and occasionally Safeway for stuff Whole Foods did not carry. It was great that Safeway was open 24/7. Here the sidewalks roll up at 9pm or so.

Whole Foods in California had good deli stuff. Not so in Rhode Island. I don't buy deli stuff at Dave's because it's packaged in plastic.

I occasionally shop at Trader Joe's, but it is a distance away and has a limited selection. Plus the good stuff often gets discontinued. Why that is, I don't know. Disappearing over the horizon, pear pizza, pizza veggie burgers, and a particular type of samosas. The only veggie burgers they carry now are mush.

I choose organic if it's right in front of me. I don't trust that Whole Foods organic is really organic. From China, who are they kidding.
Last edited by mouses on Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:07 am, edited 2 times in total.

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JMacDonald
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by JMacDonald » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:05 am

99 Cent Store, Food for Less, Smart & Final, Costco. These stores are where I find the best prices for the items I buy.
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sport
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by sport » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:09 am

Costco and a well-respected local chain, Heinen's.

AntsOnTheMarch
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by AntsOnTheMarch » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:11 am

Only the ones I can walk to.

DetroitRick
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by DetroitRick » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:12 am

Most of our groceries are from: Kroger, Meijer (regional), and Target
Also use Whole Foods and Trader Joe's to a smaller degree, plus some ethnic food stores and our farmers markets.

We're generally not motivated very much by the organic label overall, but there are some products where we slightly prefer it.

infotrader
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by infotrader » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:14 am

Not believe in organic foods from store, but grow veggies in my backyard.
Aldi is my primary grocery store. I go to costco at lot, but don't buy perishables there.

dogagility
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by dogagility » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:14 am

I definitely don't believe in Organic or non-GMO food. It doesn't make intellectual sense from a risk perspective... i.e. there is no, or at most a vanishingly small risk, to non-organic or GMO food.

With that said, my family purchases most of our food at what appear to us to be the best value: Target (with 5% cash back card) and Costco (with 2% cash back card).
Last edited by dogagility on Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:15 am, edited 1 time in total.

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KSOC
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by KSOC » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:15 am

I have many choices where I live. Aldi is first list, then fill the rest at Publix for BOGO's & certain products. Not an organic guy either. Dollar-wise 70% Aldi & 30% Publix. I don't sacrifice quality for price, but I won't replace value for brand.
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infotrader
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by infotrader » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:15 am

infotrader wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:14 am
Not believe in organic foods from store, but grow veggies in my backyard.
Aldi is my primary grocery store. I go to costco at lot, but don't buy perishables there.
I have to add that I shop at 99ranch market and bunch of Korean supermarkets: Greenland, Zion and Hmart. I live in socal.

Traveler
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by Traveler » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:19 am

I primarily shop at Kroger and Publix but buy a few specific things at Trader Joe's. I rarely shop at Aldi or Target and never at Whole Foods and Walmart. I occasionally look at the weekly ads but saving a few dollars usually isn't worth the inconvenience of going to multiple stores.

ncbill
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by ncbill » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:20 am

Lidl opened here recently nearby.

And immediately became our "go-to" store.

Much better than the Aldi's which has been around for years, though, to be fair, Aldi's here is not in the best part of town.

mouses
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by mouses » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:22 am

dogagility wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:14 am
I definitely don't believe in Organic or non-GMO food. It doesn't make intellectual sense from a risk perspective... i.e. there is no, or at most a vanishingly small risk, to non-organic or GMO food.
Until GMO farmers can keep their crops from contaminating organic farms even miles away, I don't buy GMO. I can't be a party to their destroying another farmer's livelihood and taking the choice away from consumers.

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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by TomatoTomahto » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:24 am

I guess I’m an outlier. I’m not incredibly pro-organic, but I have a local meat share (Walden) for grass-feed beef and pastured proteins, I get local eggs at a farm stand, and shop for whatever I can’t get from local stands at Wegman’s, Roche Bros, Trader Joes, or (very seldom) Whole Foods.

What I spend on groceries I no longer spend on medicine (insulin especially). Watch The Magic Pill on Netflix.

SagaciousTraveler
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by SagaciousTraveler » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:37 am

sport wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:09 am
Costco and a well-respected local chain, Heinen's.
Same. Heinens is a bit pricey but the cleanliness, selection and customer service make up for it.

runner3081
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by runner3081 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:39 am

Some combo of:
Fry's Signature (Kroger store)
Safeway
Sprouts

Those are all within 1.5 miles of the house.

Will also occasionally add WinCo, Smart and Final and Walmart.

UpperNwGuy
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by UpperNwGuy » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:40 am

All my produce and much of my meat comes from my neighborhood farmers markets. I occasionally go to Whole Foods, Giant Food, and Safeway for things I can't get at the farmers markets. I like my food to be very fresh, and pesticide free. I like my meat and eggs to come from pastured animals. I dislike industrial agriculture in all its forms. I buy organic and non-GMO as much as I can. The fewer ingredients on the label, the better.

sschoe2
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by sschoe2 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:45 am

Aldi for almost everything. A bit at Walmart. Jewel for Soda.

The Wizard
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by The Wizard » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:47 am

I shop mainly at Market Basket, a local MA/NH chain.
https://www.shopmarketbasket.com
Good prices and I like that their live lobsters are priced the same per pound regardless of size...
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FireProof
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by FireProof » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:54 am

Love Lidl. Very good prices, and pretty nice variety with sourcing in many countries and their different themed weeks (e.g. Italian, Greek, Asian, French), which also leave leftover products. Went to Costco yesterday, Lidl today, and for 2/3 the price, I got way more, and much more interesting stuff at Lidl (no free samples, though!)

AlwaysWannaLearn
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by AlwaysWannaLearn » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:59 am

The Wizard wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:47 am
I shop mainly at Market Basket, a local MA/NH chain.
https://www.shopmarketbasket.com
Same. It's a little further away but the prices can't be beat. I don't buy into all the organic, non-GMO hype.
ncbill wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:20 am
Lidl opened here recently nearby.
And immediately became our "go-to" store.
Much better than the Aldi's which has been around for years, though, to be fair, Aldi's here is not in the best part of town.
I very much look forward to Lidl's US expansion....
Last edited by AlwaysWannaLearn on Sat Jun 30, 2018 6:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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oldcomputerguy
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by oldcomputerguy » Sun Jun 17, 2018 11:03 am

For years I've shopped at Food City (decent prices, close to home). Since retiring, I've joined a local YMCA / gym, and sometimes will stop on the way home from the gym at Publix. Frankly, Publix has much better quality produce than Food City's, and Publix carries a somewhat larger variety of non-beef-based products (being a gout sufferer I stay away from red meat for the most part). But they do seem to have higher prices. Usually it will depend on circumstances; I'm not fanatic over either. (If circumstances warrant, I'll also drop some grocery bucks at Kroger.)
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frugalecon
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by frugalecon » Sun Jun 17, 2018 11:06 am

I buy a lot from Whole Foods, so I guess I am the outlier. I find their fruits and vegetables and meats to be far higher quality than standard grocery stores. I suspect they have a much more efficient distribution system, but I could be wrong. But I do buy a lot from various local businesses, like a bakery, butcher shop, deli/wine store. Plus occasional trips to TJs and Costco. To be honest, I find TJs quality to be pretty low on a lot of items. And I try to avoid all of the packaged foods that they push.

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Sheepdog
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$24

Post by Sheepdog » Sun Jun 17, 2018 11:10 am

Aldi #1. A new one just opened 3 weeks ago here which is considerably larger and better stocked than the previous one
Kroger #2. I can't get everything at Aldi, so i finish shopping at Kroger on the same day.


For your possible interest. I ran a prices comparison for 10 staple items 3 weeks ago to compare Aldi, Kroger and Walmart. I seldom buy anything at Walmart, but when I was there, I would walk around and always felt they Walmart has most public fooled. I felt that there groceries were not that low and was closer to Kroger than for Aldi.
This price comparison was for products of the same quality and size. It included bread, prepared package salad mix, russet potatoes, ground beef, tomatoes on the vine, private packaged can soup, eggs, 12 pack toilet paper, milk, peanut butter.
I realize that is not a good comparison of normal grocery shopping, but for me it was to compare general prices of staple products. It matched my general price experiences in the past though.
Total cost of those products: Aldi, $20.86, Kroger$23.70, Walmart $24.19
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cheesepep
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by cheesepep » Sun Jun 17, 2018 11:18 am

So-called ethnic grocery stores, but I consider them normal grocery stores. Occasionally Costco and the local supermarket. No organic for me. I also visit the local wet market for fresh veggies and seafood.

corgimom11
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by corgimom11 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 11:24 am

Primary is Costco mostly out of convenience, it is the closest store to my office, and convenient/easy to stop on my way home. Also enjoy wine and quality for the price is unmatched there.

Everything else traditionally at Kroger, especially now that they have the Clicklist pickup. Costs $5 each time, but usually saves me more than that with the specific coupons they have for Clicklist shoppers.

Loik098
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by Loik098 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 12:16 pm

1) Dry goods: Winco. Makes no sense to pay more for the exact same items at a name-brand grocery store like Raleys, Safeway, etc.
2) Produce: local farmer's market on Saturday mornings. Produce at grocery stores can never be as fresh (including Whole Paycheck).
3) Meat: Costco, Winco, or Sprouts....depends on who's cheaper and what I need. Seafood comes from Asian grocery store (99 Ranch).

123
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by 123 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:09 pm

In California we primarily use Safeway, Smart & Final, and Trader Joe's. We do some grocery shopping at Costco but it averages less than 10% of our grocery expenses (primarily meats and fish).
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livesoft
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by livesoft » Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:16 pm

The responses in this thread (when there are enough of them) should likely end up representing the market share of each of the supermarkets in the US.
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ClevrChico
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by ClevrChico » Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:17 pm

Primarily Aldi, supplemented by Asian grocers, and the pricey regional chain for convenience.

Interestingly, Tobacco Outlet Plus Grocery offers super cheap groceries at a convenience store. As in $1.99/gallon milk and other prices competitive or cheaper than anywhere else. It's hard to wrap my head around that the price leader is a gas station/grocery/tobacco store. :-) Obviously, selection is limited.

goodlifer
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by goodlifer » Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:26 pm

I'm blessed with an overabundance of choice within 5 miles of my house. I usually shop Costco, a local non-chain, and Meijer. I also order beef from a rancher and shop the farmers markets. But we also have WF, TJ, Jewel, Walmart, Target, two other non-chains, and 3 ethnic shops. I prefer to buy organic.

matatupuncher
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by matatupuncher » Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:33 pm

I'm in Central Africa so my "super market" options are limited to Simba and Naukumatt. I occasionally use those two but mostly use a corner market or send my yard boy to get what I need at the local market.

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Sheepdog
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by Sheepdog » Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:40 pm

matatupuncher wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:33 pm
I'm in Central Africa so my "super market" options are limited to Simba and Naukumatt. I occasionally use those two but mostly use a corner market or send my yard boy to get what I need at the local market.
I am MY yard boy.
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DarthSage
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by DarthSage » Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:44 pm

ncbill wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:20 am
Lidl opened here recently nearby.

And immediately became our "go-to" store.

Much better than the Aldi's which has been around for years, though, to be fair, Aldi's here is not in the best part of town.
I'm so excited to hear this! We have a Lidl that's supposed to open soon--lot is cleared, road put in, but the lot sits vacant. Close enough to walk to! I'm a huge Aldi's fan--have been for years--and we only got one here (across the street from the Lidl site!) about a year ago.

To answer the OP's question: Right now, I go ~50/50 Aldi's/Walmart. I very occasionally hit Food Lion, Publix, or Harris-Teeter to cherry-pick specials or to get something I can't find at the other two. I also do farmer's markets. We have Whole Foods--way overpriced, IMHO--and Trader Joe's. I like TJ's, it's fairly close, but I just don't seem to get there much. I will make a special trip or two around the holidays or if DD22 is visiting.

I have a yard boy, DS21. He's kind of surly, but I'll keep him.

sschoe2
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by sschoe2 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:53 pm

livesoft wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:16 pm
The responses in this thread (when there are enough of them) should likely end up representing the market share of each of the supermarkets in the US.
I doubt it. Bogleheads tend to be more frugal. I suspect Whole Foods, Marianos, and the like to be underrepresented.

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yukonjack
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by yukonjack » Sun Jun 17, 2018 2:10 pm

I have numerous convenient choices. An approximate percentage would be 60% Costco, 20% Target, 15% Trader Joe’s and 5% Whole Foods. As for the organic information I do believe the part about certain vegetables and fruits are more risky as non organic. Food with thin skins that are fully consumed such as blueberries, strawberries and peaches seem to me a wise choice as organic.

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BolderBoy
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by BolderBoy » Sun Jun 17, 2018 2:30 pm

King Soopers (owned by Kroger) about a mile down the hill.
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FireProof
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by FireProof » Sun Jun 17, 2018 2:35 pm

sschoe2 wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:53 pm
livesoft wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:16 pm
The responses in this thread (when there are enough of them) should likely end up representing the market share of each of the supermarkets in the US.
I doubt it. Bogleheads tend to be more frugal. I suspect Whole Foods, Marianos, and the like to be underrepresented.
But also tend to be upper middle class.

jlawrence01
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by jlawrence01 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 3:04 pm

I often travel around the state of Arizona as well as the country so I have greater flexibility as to where I shop. Also, I think nothing of buying a year supplies of non-perishable staples if I get a good deal.

I shop at the following:

Fry's/Kroger's/Smiths - about 50%
Winco Foods about 10% - closest location is 125 miles
ALDI - closest location is 250 miles until later this year
Various international stores - Jungle Jim's, Super H Mart, Mitsuwa, Lee-Lee and Arizona International Marketplace

My experience is that Walmart is generally priced the same as Kroger stores everyday prices ... but with the sale items, it is far more expensive. Also, their Great Value brand is generally terrible. I have to cook with that stuff when I head over to my in-laws so I insist on bringing the food I am going to use when I prepare their meals. YES, Great Value is THAT bad.

I avoid Safeway like the plague. We have found numerous issues with food quality (they produce their fried chicken at 7 am in my local store). Also, there is hardly ever a visit where we get charged the shelf price on ALL items or where everything is rung up correctly. My wife thought I was crazy when I asserted that but then she shopped at Safeway and found errors in four of five visits.

dogagility
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by dogagility » Sun Jun 17, 2018 3:09 pm

mouses wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:22 am
dogagility wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:14 am
I definitely don't believe in Organic or non-GMO food. It doesn't make intellectual sense from a risk perspective... i.e. there is no, or at most a vanishingly small risk, to non-organic or GMO food.
Until GMO farmers can keep their crops from contaminating organic farms even miles away, I don't buy GMO. I can't be a party to their destroying another farmer's livelihood and taking the choice away from consumers.
Natural processes "contaminate" every crop all the time... it's called genetics.

RollTide31457
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by RollTide31457 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 3:29 pm

Kroger and Walmart. We’ve never been to any of the Whole Foods in our area.

retiredjg
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by retiredjg » Sun Jun 17, 2018 3:32 pm

I'm an outlier as well. Buy almost all organic and non-GMO, locally grown, grass fed, raw, the whole enchilada. I have little control over what I eat at restaurants so I don't worry about it. I just try to do better at home.

I'd be Whole Foods all the way except the closest store is at least an hour away. So I shop at smaller local "health food" stores for the most part. I buy paper products at the local large chain.

Organic makes sense to me. GMO...well, it makes sense to me, but we won't really know the effects on our bodies for another 50 to 100 years.

The idea that GMO has been deemed "safe" is a ridiculous statement made by those who have no understanding of how research works. I'd rather not gamble it, especially since I believe that GMO farming is not good for farmers, farm workers, or the environment. It's really good for some large agri-businesses though. :happy

AerialWombat
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by AerialWombat » Sun Jun 17, 2018 3:44 pm

I’m probably an extreme outlier. I have plentiful options within walking distance, including Wal-Mart, but 98% of my meals come from daily drives to a nearby corner that includes Walgreens, Arby’s, and Taco Bell. I alternate fairly equally amongst the three.

My refrigerator is used exclusively to hold leftovers and frozen dinners. My stove hasn’t been used in months.

stan1
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by stan1 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 3:49 pm

Military commissary for everything but meat. We do not buy in bulk for two people.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by FrugalInvestor » Sun Jun 17, 2018 3:58 pm

We shop at Costco, Safeway, Trader Joe's, Sprouts and WalMart depending on the item and convenience. We spend the bulk of our grocery dollars at Costco because we purchase meats, wine and other high value items there. We shop most frequently at Safeway because it's the closest by far. We purchase specialty items at Trader Joe's and Sprouts and commodity items and most toiletries at WalMart.
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Gnirk
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by Gnirk » Sun Jun 17, 2018 4:02 pm

I shop at Costco, Safeway, and Trader Joe’s, depending upon what I need. And I buy organic whenever it’s available. As I tell my DH, I buy organic for what isn’t in it!

Carter3
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Re: Which Supermarket are you?

Post by Carter3 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 4:08 pm

SagaciousTraveler wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:37 am
sport wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:09 am
Costco and a well-respected local chain, Heinen's.
Same. Heinens is a bit pricey but the cleanliness, selection and customer service make up for it.
You're reminding me of my youth. My mother swore by Heinen's over stop n shop.

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