Dollar Tree Has a Few Less Leaves…

You’d think I wouldn’t run screaming from the thought of a second post about aluminum foil, but apparently I’m a glutton…

They’re not even trying to be sly about it anymore.

Today Son and I went to the Dollar Tree, my favorite dollar store. My local store sometimes carries the bread we use, at less than 1/2 the price I pay at Costco. Sure, it’s at the end of it’s freshness, but I just pop it into the freezer and take it out when we need more. It’s fine! So, whenever I am in the area I stop by and buy 2 or three loaves.

Today they didn’t have our bread, but of course I cannot enter without browsing. After all, Christmas is only 113 days away.

I went to check out their aluminum foil. I don’t typically buy aluminum foil there anymore. Their supplier evidently changed, and the new stuff is more like cellophane than aluminum foil. It is awful. That said, I sometimes buy their heavy duty, as sometimes I need the wider sheets. It’s not as good as your normal heavy duty foil, but it is almost as good as regular foil. Which is about as much as I could hope for.

I approach the shelf, and this is what I see…

Hmmmm. Which one should I choose?

Hmmmm. Which one should I choose?

Hmmm. 27 feet for $1? Or 30 feet for $1? Which should I choose….?

Gee, Dollar Tree. You’re not even trying to pretend we’re getting as much as we were before (Psst! Next time get rid of all the non-shrinkrayed product before putting out the new, better, lesser stuff!).

Really, I get it, Dollar Tree. Less product makes sense for you. Otherwise you’d have to rename yourself to Dollar-or-so Tree, or Dollar-and-a-half Tree, or More Than a Dollar Tree…

Well, it wasn’t a total loss. I bought the most wonderful fuzzy socks for all my gal friends for Christmas. Seriously , if you’ve not felt the fuzziness against your feet you are missing out…


Hey Publix! You can’t foil me!

Read this and enjoy my folly.  This post  wasn’t up ten minutes before someone less stupid than I noticed why it was priced higher…

There’s a good chance we’ll get some nasty weather due to Tropical Storm Fay, so today Son and I went to Publix to pick up some hurricane supplies. We’ve already got water and batteries galore, so we did what most hurricane-experienced South Floridians really stock up on when a storm’s a’coming: comfort food.

During Tropical Storm or Hurricane Fay we’ll be feasting on homemade banana bread and cinnamon rolls,chips and dip, sandwiches and veggie platters. Mmmmmm….

While at Publix I realized I was nearly out of aluminum foil. I used to buy aluminum foil at the dollar store, but suddenly their foil is more like mylar than aluminum foil. Wassup with that? No I usually buy something on sale and with a coupon to get the best bang for decent foil.

So after getting Son his free cookie we walked to the foil aisle and I perused the choices. This is what I saw:

So Not a Deal
Publix’s Generic Aluminum Foil

Hmmm. Tweenty-five feet is $.99. Not bad! Better than the dollar store. So I checked out the fifty-feet roll and it’s…


So, I get to pay and additional $.70 to get 1 roll instead of two? Not likely.

I snapped the photo (blame the quality on Blackberry) and am sending it along with this note to Publix:

Dear Publix,

I was in your store today and couldn’t help but notice that your fifty foot roll of generic aluminum foil at $2.69 is $.71 more than the cost of two twenty-five foot rolls ($1.98). What possible excuse can you have for this type of pricing? It seems an overt (or perhaps covert?) attempt to take advantage of uninformed or too-hurried/harried consumers. I await your reply, and so do my readers…

Be This Way

I’ll let you know what happens…

Bigger Packages Are Not Always A Better Value

They must think we’re stupid. Or too busy to notice. Or so entrenched in the “bigger is better” mentality that we won’t care that we’re wasting money.

Well, I’m not too stupid, too busy, or too entrenched. I notice.

I’ve just been noticing it a lot more lately.

I’ll be at the grocery store, or Target, or Walmart, and I’ll reach for the bigger package of cereal, or dryer sheets, or sausages.

And then I’ll compare the smaller package’s price per unit to the larger package’s, and the smaller package is a better deal.

Just today I was at Publix and wanted to take advantage of a sale on breakfast sausages. I can buy a box of 15 links (which, by the way, looks twice the size of the smaller box) at 2 for $5.00, or I can buy a box of 10 links at 5 for $5.00. Needless to say I stocked up with the smaller boxes.

Yesterday I was at Target and their Target brand 24 double roll toilet tissue was on sale for $11.99. Their 12 double roll pack was $5.87…

What do you think of the practice? It feels dishonest, but it really isn’t. They do give us the information, even if it’s not always easy to figure out in three seconds or less. If we take the time to do the math we can figure out the best deal. After all, it’s not their fault we aren’t paying attention.

Yes, it sure is happening more and more lately. Like shrinking package sizes and buy one, get one free deals that aren’t what they’re cracked up to be, I am forced to be ever more vigilant while shopping.

The moral of the story: even if it says “On Sale” or “Value Size” or “Family Size” or “Buy More, Save More” on the package, please do the math.

It just seems unfair to have to, doesn’t it?

Shrinking Package Sizes Screw up My Recipes

I am not an off-the-cuff cook. I’m not one to experiment, to add a dash of this and a pinch of that.

I need recipes. I never really cooked much more than fried matzoh and baked chicken until I got married. I don’t have a spohisticated palate, so deciding which tastes go well together or creating my own dishes just doesn’t happen. It’s never going to. I need someone to tell me exactly how much of each ingredient to add and, as I found out during one unfortunate baking disaster, in which order to add them together.

That was all fine and dandy, as there are plenty of recipes around. I love my Betty Crocker cookbook, though I do covet and hope to find an old copy of the Joy of Cooking. So I was humming along merrily, cooking to recipe, until things started getting complicated.

Why did things get complicated?

Because manufacturers are afraid to raise prices, so instead they’re screwing up my recipes.

Have you noticed it? Did you realize that your toilet paper has less sheets than it used to (no, I don’t cook with it!), or that your canned corn has fifteen ounces instead of sixteen?

Does your cereal now only last you twelve days instead of fourteen?

Manufacturers are shrinking the amount of food we get per package, and they’re certainly not reducing prices. They don’t want us to think about whether or not we still want to buy something now that the price has increased, like so many of us are doing now as we see grocery prices rise. They want us to just keep buying, and hope we don’t notice.

But I notice. You know, I don’t have one single recipe that calls for a 15 ounce can of corn. My corn casserole, a Thanksgiving (and Easter) staple, calls for a sixteen ounce can of creamed corn, and a sixteen ounce can of sweet corn. Sixteen, not fifteen. So, either I buy extra cans or my recipe suffers. I HATE that.

I hate that I have to think about making adjustments, no matter how minor, to my recipes. I hate thinking about whether adding something else will make it thick enough, or cake-like enough. I don’t know the answers!

So thanks, manufacturers. Thanks for screwing up my recipes. I’d rather pay a few cents more (well, I’d really rather not) so that my recipes don’t suffer.

Let’s organize a protest. Let’s all meet at the Del Monte offices and throw stewed tomatoes at them. From the fifteen ounce cans.

They’ll have one less ounce to clean up.

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