I used to shop solely at Fred Meyer. Once my son was born I started shopping at the Hillsdale Farmers Market. This is a year round Farmers Market and we built it into our week. M and I would walk there, shop for fruits and veg, play at the playground and go home. It was lovely. I eventually added in Trader Joes (which my husband calls the snack emporium) until it became one of the regulars.
After we moved last fall the closest grocery store to my house was New Seasons and now I shop there as my primary grocery store. Last April I joined a coop. Now I am finding more and more ways to avoid the grocery store and to get my food in bulk.
The thing that surprised me is my growing aversion to Trader Joes (aside from the overabundance of packaging). My husband had a really bad experience there with another customer and I have had three negative experiences recently with quality. So, I think it is going to go back to being the snack emporium for us. The wine is good and the chips are yummy. And that is where it belongs.
So today I found myself at New Season’s and an employee telling me that Whole Foods bulk is cheaper! I have gone there recently more often due to their raw section and their non-dairy cheese. Ending up thinking their bulk section looked awesome and the prices a little cheaper. But having a New Seasons employee confirm it means I making the right moves toward more bulk foods and shopping at the right stores for the right things. It might be more of a pain to shop at Costco (for snack and household goods), New Seasons (for some bulk, produce, jarred items, protein), Whole Foods (raw, vegan specialty items, bulk, produce), Winco (cat stuff, pullups) and the coop (produce, bulk grocery, spices), but I like knowing I am buying food at the best place to buy the food I want.
As I continue my slow transition towards shopping more at the coop (through better planning and more use of bulk grocery), I feel like I am doing the right thing for my family. Trying to find the foods we like in a way that is good for us. Hopefully a little better for the community as well.