Shh… don't tell anyone I'm poor. They all think I'm living frugal and green just like everyone these days. This is a blog about a senior citizen living a frugal life, on a fixed income, in a low income food desert, and passing along knowledge from lessons learned. Some she learned from her Grandma Mama many years ago and some learned only a few days ago.
The downed tree finally got cleaned up.
I went to the new neighborhood farmer’s market yesterday. I bought two cucumbers, 50 cents each; two tomatoes 1.50 each; two peppers 50 cents each; and eight peaches 25 cents each. Half of these are for my SIL who asked me to get them for her. So, total spent for me is $3.50.
I was disappointed when I got home and realized these were not home grown as we had been led to believe. Yeah, I did think they looked too perfect. These are the same produce found at a grocery store but higher priced. This is the same produce found at the pop up road side stands found everywhere. I’m not sure I want to pay extra for the convenience of buying closer to home. Sure, if these had been home grown I’d be glad to pay a little more to support a local farmer. I’d even go so far as to buy extra for canning. But; I’m totally against paying more for store produce just because I live in a food desert.
Now I’m feeling like an idiot. Apparently its a farmer’s market without the farmer and I should have realized it right away but I didn’t. I decided to weigh the produce to see what the real cost was for what I bought. I paid $3 for two tomatoes which together weigh one pound. So three dollars a pound for tomatoes at the farmer’s market who has no farmer. Tomatoes are on sale for .99 a pound this week at all the grocery stores. So for the close to home convenience I paid three times the price. In the store ad Kroger has local farm grown tomatoes for only 1.99 a pound this week. Even at that price its less than what I paid at the farmer”s market without a farmer.
Now lets see about the cost of the peaches. Hmm… not as bad but also over priced. Two and a half pounds for two dollars. That comes to 80 cents a pound. Peaches are on sale for 59 cents a pound this week. So for the convenience I paid an extra 21 cents a pound.
Cucumbers and peppers were on sale at stores cheaper too. You see why I feel like such an idiot? Paying extra for food just for the convenience of having it close to home is typical of a food desert. It makes life very hard when basic needs are way over priced. Eating healthy is also much more difficult. I won’t be going back again. My budget is much too limited to be paying three times the cost for food just because its close to home.