Grocery Shopping Week 2: Whole Foods

>> Friday, September 26, 2008


Whole Foods scores
Better World Shopper: A
Co-op America Responsible Shopper: B- for ethics and governance, C for health and safety, C for greenwashing

Distance from my house: 7.3 miles (17 minutes)

I'm at the opposite end of the scale this week. I saw Whole Foods described as Whole Paycheck recently, and that's not too far from the truth. Whole Foods is the type of store that makes me feel like I have to be rich and single to be able to eat natural, organic, and fair trade foods. Despite that, I think Whole Foods is an admirable company, and I would really love to able to shop there more. Plus, they not only don't roll their eyes about my reusable bags, they actually give me a $0.10 discount for each bag I bring.

Almost everything I bought today was labeled as organic - even the sugary cereal, which just seems weird. The produce selection is huge, and I like how they include on their signs where the items came from, even if very few items were locally produced. I was also able to find milk, cheese, and yogurt without hormones, and they even have milk from a local dairy (Maple View Farm) packaged in glass bottles. Today, I chose to buy the Whole Foods brand of milk because it was about a dollar cheaper, but I checked out Maple View Farm's website when I got home, and they say their milk is hormone-free, the cows are fed some grass and some mixed-grain, and the glass bottles are returnable (although how you return them was not explained).

They have a nice bulk foods section, including super yummy chocolate-covered raisins and pretzels, but it's hard to fathom paying that much for oats and flour. There is a really cool machine in the bulk foods section that grinds peanuts into peanut butter or almonds into almond butter.

I've been buying my laundry detergent, dish soap, body soap, and other beauty supplies at Whole Foods for a long time, so I definitely recommend both of those sections.

I didn't see many Fair Trade Certified items, but I did find fair trade chocolate chips.

Here's what I bought:

organic tofu
cheddar cheese (3 cup bag)
juice (2)
organic butter
organic milk
organic applesauce
organic baby food (7 jars)
organic baby cereal (2 boxes)
pitas
organic cereal (2 boxes)
organic yogurt
avocado
organic carrots
organic bananas
mushrooms

Total = $60.03

Note: Keep in mind that these shopping trips only include my weekly perishable items and do not include my pantry staples (like flour, sugar, oats, etc.), my health and beauty items, or my cleaning supplies. I'm looking into joining a buying club for the pantry staples, and I already buy most of the other items at Whole Foods.

3 comments:

needsofabeautiful March 14, 2009 at 6:50 PM  

Your very beautiful and there are wonderful ideas
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Blog
The needs of a beautiful
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Dogfood Provider January 31, 2010 at 12:07 AM  

I'm not sure if you figured this out between posting this and now, but you can return Maple View Farms glass bottles back to the grocery store where you got them. Take them to the customer service counter, and they will either give you a slip that you give to the cashier, who will credit the bottle deposit against your total, which is what they do at Whole Foods, or they will hand you cash right there, which is what they do at Kroger.

Erin aka Conscious Shopper February 1, 2010 at 9:29 PM  

@Dogfood Provider - Thanks! I did eventually figure it out, but it's nice to have your comment here in case anyone else finds this post and is confused about what to do with the bottles. You can also take them back to the Mae Farm stand at the state farmer's market.

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