Are You Paying a Premium for Your Groceries?

Genevieve Fish

When it comes to groceries, we like to shop around. Yes, we have our favorite local spot, but that spot—a delicious West Coast grocery chain that shall not be named—is absurdly expensive. We are all for splurging on food. After all, you are what you eat. So really splurging on good food is splurging on your health, right? Not always. Sometimes we splurge because we’re ignorant about the other options available. Other times, we’re lazy and don’t want to waste time in the car or bargain hunting to find the most cost-effective option.

That’s why we conducted a little experiment involving a product-by-product comparison of three national grocery stores—Whole Foods, Trader Joes, and Ralph’s—and a farmer's market. The price discrepancies across these four grocery providers was part expected, part bizarre, and part totally surprising. Granted, all four of these options proved to be drastically less expensive than our usual local spot, but who knew the price of organic brown eggs could swing $3 in the space of one neighborhood? 

Read on for some surprising conclusions from our experiment.

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