When Jayme and I tell people we shop at Costco, at times, they look at us like we’re crazy. There’s this misconception out there that Costco is exclusively to be used for giant portions of pre-packaged, processed foods like a gallon of canned queso or in preparation for a toddlers birthday party. And then there’s the people looking for health who think they need to hit up Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s to find the small-portioned, organic produce and that the diminutive quantity, along with the high price tag, equals quality. This is simply not true.
Look! Look at all of this food you can get for $250. It is all organic produce, except for the Romaine, which wasn’t available on our weekly Costco run. There is Organic, free range ground turkey. We have a couple of pre-packaged, processed things for the kids like Baked Apple Crisps that have no other ingredients than organic apples and Caveman Paleo Protein Bars that have limited sugar (yes this was an argument between Jayme and I…mom won). No matter your dietary regiment, nutrient density per dollar spent should be of concern.
It is undeniable the amount of savings you get over a standard grocery store. For instance, a six-pack of line caught tuna is $14.99 at Costco, while the exact same brand at a “specialty grocer” was $5.99 for ONLY ONE CAN! That’s just one example.
How about their meat? If you’re into that type of thing. It’s the best meat we have found in the city, including neighborhood butchers, and at a fraction of the cost. Seemingly every trip we make brings new types of fresh, organic, sustainable products to our grocery cart. There’s a reason they succeed as a business…they have buying power to be able to bring their customers the best available products at the lowest cost. Costco would much rather pinch the dollars out of their suppliers and be a hassle for them to deal with than charge their customers a higher price. It’s what makes them so good.
Stop viewing them as WalMart. They are not quantity over quality. They are both quality and quantity. And for those who argue that it’s too much quantity and you could never eat that much; how about you start enjoying leftovers and using your freezer?
Don’t use money as an excuse for poor dietary decisions if you are shopping at standard grocers for your food. And don’t think that necessarily paying more means better. You can have both quality and quantity. And you can have more and pay less. Start saving your health and your wallet. It will pay off in the long run.