Since becoming a part-time stay-at-home mom, I have begun to enjoy some things I used to find extremely inconvenient.
Such as grocery shopping.
Previously I would get in and out of there as quickly as possible, throwing my usual items into the cart and silently cursing at people in my way.
But nowadays I lull my child to sleep in the shopping cart, then leisurely drink a coffee while lingering in aisles, comparing products and pricing.
Which brings me to the huge discovery I have made regarding grocery shopping that I’m going to share with you.
Not only is the international aisle at Superstore a super fun wonderland, it’s also where you can get many of the same products that are sold in other aisles, just for way cheaper!
I will save the speculation on why North American consumers are prone to pay more for products with a non-foreign label on them, or that are easy to find, and just get right down to this:
We are paying a SIGNIFICANT premium for products in the regular aisle compared to the international aisle, and not because of a difference in quality.
To demonstrate my point here are the specs on five items that I buy regularly. (In cases with multiple examples from the regular aisles, the premiums are calculated according to the highest priced product versus the one from the international aisle.)
Canned black beans
All the products are canned and packed in Canada (and are likely grown here) and all these companies are Canadian (including ARZ). So you are supporting Canadian business and likely farmers no matter which of these brands you buy (but saving a lot of money when you buy the one that looks foreign). Hahaha #irony.
Despite the fact that we grow flax right here in Saskatchewan, neither of these is labelled a product of Canada and likely come from the U.S. According to industry insiders, there may be slight variation in the oil content of different flax crops which could affect the quality of the product, but the difference would be too minor for the consumer to tell. I’ve tried both these products and cannot tell a difference.
International aisle for the win!
This is one my absolute favourite because not only are you paying a HUGE premium for the regular aisle brands, I think the ARZ brand is the most delicious oregano I have ever tasted. It tastes like it just came from the garden (it actually comes from Lebanon). Since buying this brand I put oregano on pretty much everything!
OK to be fair on this one, I haven’t tried both brands. I just don’t need that much basmati rice. I doubt anyone needs 18kg of basmati rice – but maybe at a 36% premium you DO?
Canned green lentils
Same deal as with the beans, these lentils are both canned and packed in Canada, by Canadian companies (and are likely Canadian lentils) so you are buying local whichever one you buy — you’re just paying more for one!
Please note: these are just five random products I chose to illustrate my point. If you looked at dry beans and lentils, and probably many other products, I am sure the savings would be even greater.
AND I distinctly left one off because I want you to look at the comparison yourself and then experience the extreme high of International Aisle Savings. (Please note: this is reserved only for people who don’t get out much, like me haha.)
Happy grocery shopping my friends and see you in the international aisle!