Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Have you noticed? Have you walked down the aisles at a Super Wal-Mart to go grocery shopping and noticed anything odd?

It's really disturbing and driving me crazy. The worse part, is there anything I can do about it without leading myself into financial ruin?

I go down the aisles to buy my dry goods, condiments, etc. and slowly start to notice that my choices have been whittled down to two or three: the top two major players and the Wal-mart brand. You want Cream of Wheat? You buy the Nabisco Cream of Wheat or the Wal-Mart brand. The end. You want the Quaker brand? Sorry. It's gone. Nabisco's is more popular, or you can buy the plain boxed brand. I am sure the generic is the same; most of the time it is packaged by the big players, but what happened to choice? Au Gratin potatoes in a box? Betty Crocker or the Wal-mart brand. Velveeta brand, Idahoan, Hungry Jack - nope. Milk? You get Wal-Mart and waaaaay over there, in a separate cooler, down near the ground, is the TG Lee, priced at a dollar a gallon or more.

And it kills me because I understand that it's done to save money. Do I want to go to Publix to get more choices? No, because I can't afford Publix/insert-your-local-chain-here. It's a self-perpetuating mess. We shop at Wal-Mart because they are so gosh-darned cheap. Because it's so gosh-darned cheap, we put up with the scary people, the angry people, the Wal-Mart people. It's either an ego-boost to go in there (it shows me how great I really have it) or it's a complete downer (it shows me how bad some children have it; they can't pick their parents. It breaks my heart.)

Have you been down the toy aisles? Our toy section shrunk by one row, and the toy I want to buy Isabel is not there. It *is* at Target though, just not Wal-Mart. Apparently, Wal-Mart doesn't think Fancy Nancy books and the dolls are popular enough for their shelves. Too intelligent, perhaps? :)

We shop there to save money and they save money by not giving anyone but their own brand and the top dogs a place on the shelf (and by paying their employees horribly). Circle O' Doom. Ugh!


Hendel D'bu said...

How astute of you to notice, and it is sad to me to realize that most do not. I noticed this right after we switched from shopping at the more expensive Fred Meyer grocery store to our new super WalMart. (yeah, we have the old WM about a mile away, but it's not a 'super'...and the new one is just cleaner...)

More choices = higher prices. Too bad, too, cuz I'm just too sick of shopping giant box stores to store-hop. Sorry, nicer-more-expensive local grocery store. Sometimes bigger is not better...but it usually cheaper.

Ari C'rona said...

Yep, agreed. :o/

Ryan said...

Can't say I shop at Wal-Mart often. (The last time might have been during my Florida Trail hike?) But I rather like a lack of choices. Sometimes I've stood in an aisle looking at spaghetti sauces and my head explodes. So many brands, so many choices.... I end up spending ten minutes trying to decide which one would be the best option, then I usually resort to picking the cheapest option. =)

So while I don't shop at Wal-Mart very often, that observation bumps it up a notch in my book! ;o)

-- Ryan

Debbie said...

I can't shop at WalMart. It just creeps me out.