Tuesday, February 28, 2012

How much did you say I saved?

ShopRite (United States)
Image via Wikipedia

After a light workout in the new 24 Hour Fitness gym in Paramus this morning, I drove over to the nearby ShopRite and picked up a few things, including thin asparagus, both green and white.

The sign said they were $1.69 a pound, so I bought a bunch of each, not really knowing how much this seasonal vegetable costs.

When I looked at my register receipt, I learned the asparagus were on sale and that I had "saved $2.37" on the white and "$2.44" on the green -- that would mean the regular price is about $4 a pound. 

Each bunch weighed a little over 1 pound ($1.74 for the white, $1.79 for green).

Wow! I'm impressed at the savings, but wonder whether ShopRite is exaggerating just to make the asparagus seem like a good buy.

I saw a package of less desirable thick green asparagus at Costco Wholesale in Hackensack several days ago, but don't remember the price. The package weighed more than 2 pounds.

On Tuesday, my wife bought Readington Farms antibiotic-free poultry, Lean Cuisine dinners, produce, Jello and other items at the Englewood ShopRite, spending a total of $72.53.

The register receipt listed "total savings today" as $12.69, even though my wife didn't bring any coupons with her.

The receipt listed "on sale savings," "manufacturer coupons" and "store coupons."
The logo
Image via Wikipedia

Items on sale included $1 off on each Lean Cuisine dinner, 20 cents off each pound of yellow bananas, $1 off Vicks DayQuil and 4 cents off Jello.

Does ShopRite just pick these numbers out of the air? Do items go on sale every Friday, let's say, or are they randomly discounted? Does the supermarket chain and manufacturers subsidize the sales equally?

Of course, the Readington Farms chicken wasn't on sale, even though ShopRite seems to discount inferior Perdue and Tyson chicken nearly every day.

My wife also bought chocolate and caramel syrups at ShopRite, but we're returning them because the first ingredient listed is high fructose corn syrup. "Cocoa" is listed fourth.

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  1. It would be nice if you investigated these questions instead of just mindlessly rambling.

  2. Sometimes, Victor, I wonder if you know your asparagus from your elbow. First off, the thicker asparagus are way more of a delicacy than the thin ones, especially steamed or sauteed and smothered with Hollandaise sauce, and the white asparagus are way more expensive than the green ones, which makes me wonder if ShopRite knows what it's doing. The green asparagus were on sale at Fairway this week, about two bucks a pound, but the white ones were around $4.49 a pound. And if you hurry your tuchas to Fairway in Paramus before Friday, you can get their olive oil, filtered OR unfiltered, Shock Priced at $4.99 a liter, but the shock wears off on Friday. You're welcome.

  3. Even when I was a reporter, I found Wakefern, the parent company of ShopRite, difficult.

    I was doing a piece on the origins of the fish and seafood sold in New Jersey, and the company refused to cooperate.

    Recently, during a Can Can Sale, ShopRite had to be fined by county weights and measures officials before honoring prices and quantities in its sales flier.

    At one ShopRite, the franchise owner told a shopper to go elsewhere, if she didn't like the store's pricing policy.

  4. $1.69 a pound for asparagus is a reasonably good price if they are good. fairway seems to range from $1.99 - $4.99 a pound depending on the time of year, etc.


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