Tuesday, July 26, 2011
When you hear the words "discount grocery" or "bargain grocery", do images of old, expired boxes of pasta or bags of generic-brand cereal or pallets of canned goods come to mind? You'd be surprised at what you can find in discount grocery stores these days! Grocery Outlet sent me a basket filled with goodies that you can find at their stores, and I have to say I was surprised:
Maranatha dark chocolate peanut spread
Burt's Bees body lotion
Amy's organic golden lentil soup
Nature's Bakery vanilla fig bar
Taylors of Harrogate Yorkshire tea
I certainly didn't expect to find specialty products like that at a place called Grocery Outlet! And all these items were priced below their regular price (for example, the Maranatha spread is $2.99, and they usually sell for about $5.99. I can vouch for that one, because we buy Maranatha all the time!).
My interest was piqued sufficiently (take note, other PR firms!) for me to actually go out and shop at the nearest Grocery Outlet store. It's about the size of a small-ish supermarket or grocery store, and it has all the usual sections, including fresh fruits and veggies, dairy, juice, and frozen goods. Unlike most grocery stores, they don't have shelves; items remain in their sturdy cardboard packing boxes, which are stacked up to make aisles. It isn't like a warehouse club, either, because you don't have to buy in bulk.
I found quite an assortment of big-name, mass-market brands, specialty brands and generic brands. I went around buying things as I normally do: Quaker oatmeal, Campbell's canned soup, Planter's nuts, fresh cantaloupe, Dole bagged salad. I also found our favorite Stonyfield Greek yogurt, Naked juice, Yves meatless ground "beef", and Jensen's Orchard veggie chips! The prices were clearly lower than you find at most supermarkets (i.e. the Stonyfield yogurt was 2 for $1, and they're usually $1.50 - $1.99), although you could probably get the same low prices at regular supermarkets when those products happen to go on sale. The store clientele also reflected the diversity: I saw a BMW and Mercedes-Benz in the parking lot, along with the beat-up old Chevys and generic Toyotas.
Unfortunately, this Grocery Outlet is too far away from where I live for me to shop there regularly -- but it's great to know that shoppers on a budget have access to high-quality food at Grocery Outlet. And it has certainly laid waste to the myth that bargain hunters can't be food snobs as well!
Disclosure: I received an assortment of products available at Grocery Outlet. The views and opinions expressed here are my own.
Labels: deals and steals