7 Grocery Store Adventures

Yesterday I spent more time than I have in a very long time at the grocery store. I decided to really read labels and compare different products. It is amazing how different two of the same type of product can be. It is also amazing how many clearly false claims companies can make. 

First it was the organic yogurt section where I buy B's yogurt. We used to give him YoBaby by Stonyfield but as of last month they are no longer on our grocery store shelves (NOOOOOO). I replaced it with another organic yogurt brand but during this trip I looked at the other brands on the shelf to see how they compare.

The brand on the right is what we had switched to. Notice the label clearly indicates that it is 'Certified Organic'. On the back it notes the certification authority and has its stamp (it is from Quebec). The brand on the left says it is organic but not certified organic and there is no certification logo on it. So is it really organic??  The price difference between these two was about $1 (with the non certified "organic" brand on the left being cheaper).  I felt confident in my decision to keep using the brand on the right but then another brand caught my eye.

This brand is certified organic (Canada certification), Foodland Ontario and made from 100% Canadian milk. Bonus is that it is made in the city next to ours which is about a 15 minute drive from here. It's price was comparable to the brand on the right above. I think the decision was clear. I went with the certified organic local yogurt. But I have to wonder how many people make their decision based solely on seeing the word organic and then taking the one with the lowest cost. In this situation I believe it would have resulted in selecting yogurt that may not actually be organic.

A few weeks ago I excitedly posted a picture to Facebook showing that our organic bananas no longer had individual stickers on them. Yesterday at the grocery store I nearly died when I saw the changes they had made. Every single piece of produce that was not in a bag had a sticker on it. I asked a Manager why they had done this and he explained that it was for easy checkout for those using the self checkout. Seems like a very non eco-friendly and labour intensive exercise to save a few seconds during checkout. I plan on writing to the store and corporate office to see if they are open to suggestions to improve this (because I have some).

I did a double take in the eco-cleaning section when I saw new packaging on the Seventh Generation products. Love that there are non plastic options now (except the lid) and it is 4x concentrated so you are getting more in less packaging. I'm pretty sure that I could compost it in our city composting program too.

How closely do you read labels when you are shopping? Do you check out new brands when they pop up on the shelf to see how they compare to your usual?

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  1. I'm an avid label reader. I believe that these days one has to be ... there are so many toxins and "evil" ingredients in things. And one also needs to do their homework to understand what the ingredients are. It's a lot of work but it's the only way to ensure that we aren't contaminating ourselves and the earth.

  2. That is so very true! It is shocking when you realize exactly what is in our food.

  3. In your search for true Organic Foods have you tried Goodness Me? I was in there a few weeks ago and was amazed.

  4. I am glad I am not the only produce sticker hater!!! I love reading your blog because whenever i do i feel like i am reading about me! LOL!! I would check the7th gen ingredients because their dish soap has SLS, not sure about the laundry detergent! Great post!!! :) oh and Ireland all labels like 8 times!!!! :):):)

  5. I hate the produce stickers and yeah you have to read everything on packages these days.

    Oh just for your info the 7th Gen laundry soap has a plastic bag in the cardboard container, which can be a bit harder to recycle than the plastic bottle they normally use.

  6. Aww man that sucks! Thanks for sharing Lisa. It really does make it even harder to make informed decisions when you can't see what is on the inside.

  7. my boyfriend is made his own detergent using borax and washing soda (I believe thats all). very cheap, something to consider!