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  #16   ^
Old Sat, May-04-19, 13:53
jschwab jschwab is offline
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Plan: Atkins72/Paleo/NoGrain/IF
Stats: 285/227/200 Female 5 feet 5.5 inches
BF:
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My teenage daughter has been doing the supermarket shopping for me the past couple of weeks because I'm finishing my Master's thesis. It's so nice I know she can read labels and make good decisions. And wants to!
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  #17   ^
Old Sat, May-04-19, 17:39
Calianna's Avatar
Calianna Calianna is offline
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Posts: 1,242
 
Plan: Atkins-ish (hypoglycemia)
Stats: 000/000/000 Female 63
BF:
Progress: 50%
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Even working in a grocery store, I have a hard time finding anything in the aisles, in part because I so seldom shop for anything in the aisles, and in part because I'm a self scan attendant, and seldom even get out of the walled-off area they've built around self scan. (And yet customers stop and ask where to find things all the time - I have a list that was made shortly after the last major rearrangement of the store, so that helps somewhat, even though things are moved around all the time)

All day long, I see the orders that consist of nothing but chips, cookies, donuts, bagels, bread, pasta, and cakes, with loads of sugary drinks. Sometimes, they're obviously to take to the office, or for some holiday/event. I have customers who come in every day though and buy several loaves of bread, along with several bags of chips, a bunch of sodas and sports drinks... and a little bit of deli meat and cheese for sandwiches. I see the sheer volume of carby food they need to get through a single day, and how much they're spending on that stuff, which is sad.

One thing I find to be very sad is that when shoppers who are struggling financially end up going over budget, they don't ask me to deduct some of the chips and gatorade or soda from their order - they ask me to deduct the meat. I understand their logic - that big bag of chips is only $2, while that relatively smaller package of meat is $8, so to them it seems more logical to remove the single package of meat, since you'd need to remove 4 bags of chips to deduct the same amount of money. Not only do they not realize what they're doing to themselves metabolically, they don't realize that they'd be a lot more satisfied for a lot longer on the meat than the chips, even though the chips take up a lot more room in their bags, so to them the chips look like a lot more food for the money.
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  #18   ^
Old Sun, May-05-19, 06:27
Bob-a-rama's Avatar
Bob-a-rama Bob-a-rama is offline
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Posts: 1,257
 
Plan: Keto (Atkins Induction)
Stats: 230/179/185 Male 5' 11"
BF:
Progress: 113%
Location: Florida
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Yes, Pork Rinds are in the carb section. I eat 85% Lindt chocolate which is in the sugar section. Cocoa is in the baking aisle. So are spices and extracts. Nuts are in another carb aisle. Ripe olives are in another processed food aisle, but I zero in on them and can't even tell you other than pickles what else is on that aisle.

But I've been doing this since the 1970s so the carb foods no longer tempt me. The sheer number of foods that I don't buy just amazes me.

Bob
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  #19   ^
Old Sun, May-05-19, 13:42
deirdra's Avatar
deirdra deirdra is online now
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Posts: 3,998
 
Plan: HF/vLC/GF,CF,SF
Stats: 197/136/150 Female 66 inches
BF:
Progress: 130%
Location: Alberta
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Calianna
All day long, I see the orders that consist of nothing but chips, cookies, donuts, bagels, bread, pasta, and cakes, with loads of sugary drinks.
I wonder if there are any statistics on what is bought by people who go through the self scanner vs. a regular cashier. I normally use the self-scanner (for my meat, green vegs & fat), but everyone around me has a high junk to realfood ratio (4:1 to 9:1). Once every couple of months I have to go through a cashier to redeem AirMiles cash-back and notice that the junk to food ratio is the opposite (and their 10-20% junk is typically healthywholegrains). Of course some of them probably look at my cart in horror as I have been known to buy 100% meat & butter if there are really good sales.
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  #20   ^
Old Sun, May-05-19, 15:47
Bonnie OFS Bonnie OFS is offline
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Posts: 2,340
 
Plan: Dr. Bernstein
Stats: 188/155/135 Female 5 ft 4 inches
BF:
Progress: 62%
Location: NE WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul in KS
Sardines, tuna, canned chicken. Those are the only things I buy that aren't in the perimeter.


And coffee.
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  #21   ^
Old Sun, May-05-19, 20:04
bkloots's Avatar
bkloots bkloots is offline
Posts: 9,428
 
Plan: Atkins/LCHF
Stats: 195/162/150 Female 63in
BF:
Progress: 73%
Location: Kansas City, MO
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I love my grocery store, and I would hate it if they decided to rearrange everything! Shopping is so simple: zip through the veggies, eggs, cheese, cream, pickles, and maybe a few extras like pork rinds.

But what really impressed me: When I asked one of the stockers where to find Xanthan Gum, he took me right to it! I was actually astonished that they had it. Hint: It was shelved near Bob's Red Mill nut flours and seeds. P.S. It's very expensive.

I take a different list to Costco, but make the same quick run: avocados, mushrooms, Brussels sprouts, berries (sometimes), eggs, and MEAT. Etc. The etc. is what runs up the tab to a hundred bucks, no matter what you have on your list.
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  #22   ^
Old Sun, May-05-19, 21:41
Bonnie OFS Bonnie OFS is offline
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Posts: 2,340
 
Plan: Dr. Bernstein
Stats: 188/155/135 Female 5 ft 4 inches
BF:
Progress: 62%
Location: NE WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkloots
But what really impressed me: When I asked one of the stockers where to find Xanthan Gum, he took me right to it! I was actually astonished that they had it. Hint: It was shelved near Bob's Red Mill nut flours and seeds. P.S. It's very expensive.


Our store workers were able to guide me to it very quickly. And I was also shocked by the price!
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  #23   ^
Old Mon, May-06-19, 03:37
Calianna's Avatar
Calianna Calianna is offline
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Posts: 1,242
 
Plan: Atkins-ish (hypoglycemia)
Stats: 000/000/000 Female 63
BF:
Progress: 50%
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkloots
But what really impressed me: When I asked one of the stockers where to find Xanthan Gum, he took me right to it! I was actually astonished that they had it. Hint: It was shelved near Bob's Red Mill nut flours and seeds. P.S. It's very expensive.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonnie OFS
Our store workers were able to guide me to it very quickly. And I was also shocked by the price!



Xanthan IS expensive! I think the last bag of it I bought was around $12. But when you realize that it takes just a tiny amount of it to thicken a sauce, that little bag of it will probably last for at least a year or two, it's a worthwhile investment. I think the most I've ever used at one time was around 1 tsp, and that was to thicken at least a pint of gravy.


Note on using xanthan: Best way to add xanthan to a sauce that I've found is to make a roux from it so it doesn't clump (easiest way to make the roux is to mix it into a bit of olive oil - approximately equal amounts xanthan and oil), then pour the roux into the already heated sauce/gravy you want to thicken. Most directions say to whisk it in, and that works well enough for a small amount of sauce, but when making a pot of gravy, I've found that I get the most thickening effect from it if I use a stick blender on it to fully emulsify the xanthan into the larger amount of gravy. I usually need to transfer the heated gravy to a deep mixing bowl for this step, so it doesn't splash when I use the stick blender on it. Then I just keep blending until the gravy starts to cool slightly, at which time the gravy color will start to lighten a bit, and the gravy will reach maximum thickening. If it's not thick enough at that point, you can add a little more xanthan (be sure to mix it into a little olive oil first), and blend again.
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  #24   ^
Old Mon, May-06-19, 05:56
bkloots's Avatar
bkloots bkloots is offline
Posts: 9,428
 
Plan: Atkins/LCHF
Stats: 195/162/150 Female 63in
BF:
Progress: 73%
Location: Kansas City, MO
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HI, Calianna. Since I've only used about a teaspoon of the xanthan (and I forget what for!) I know it will last a while. Thanks for the advice about gravy, which I haven't even thought about making in any form for years! Perhaps I'll see about using more of that thickener. You might start a Xanthan Gum thread in the recipe section to help others figure this out.

As for the traffic through the grocery store: not long ago a major grocery discount chain opened a brand new store in one of the "food deserts" near my home. (That is, an area of poverty underserved by healthy food sources.). I was excited about the convenience. But when I walked in the door, I was shocked: the entire first aisle, which you were forced to walk all the way down before reaching the main part of the store, was junk food. Chips, crackers, candy, etc. That was a long walk of temptation. I've never seen an "ordinary" grocery store arranged this way, and I strongly suspect an understandable, but somehow evil, marketing strategy.
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  #25   ^
Old Mon, May-06-19, 07:17
Bob-a-rama's Avatar
Bob-a-rama Bob-a-rama is offline
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Posts: 1,257
 
Plan: Keto (Atkins Induction)
Stats: 230/179/185 Male 5' 11"
BF:
Progress: 113%
Location: Florida
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I don't use the self-scanners, figuring I'm helping to save someone's job. Also, it's like I'm doing free labor for the store. Give me a 5% discount for using the scanner, and I might be very tempted.

---

Xanthan seems expensive, but a little goes a long way. I use 1/4 tsp in a cup of hot cocoa so that I don't have to use carb-y milk, and then I add some heavy whipping cream for flavor.

---

I think the reason they keep rearranging the products in a grocery store is to make you wander around, hoping you will see something you don't usually buy and put it in your cart.

---

I also think the ratio of carb foods people buy are about equal to the ratio in the store. It's what other people's carts look like to me.

---

I admit, sugar tastes great, but it isn't great for me. If I didn't know better, I'd be at the donut shop every day like my father used to do (it killed him when he was younger than I am now).

At one time my taste buds ruled what I ate, now my brain and my taste buds have reached a point of compromise.

That zero-carb burger bun at netrition doesn't taste nearly as good as the 'real thing', but it holds my 100% grass-fed organic burger with A2 cheese on it just fine and is an acceptable substitute.

Stevia in my tea doesn't taste quite as good as table sugar, but it's a great compromise.

I could go on and on but all of us here have our own compromises.

And there are things that there is no substitute or compromise for. I grew up eating macaroni (now mostly called pasta) but I haven't had any in decades. The zero or low carb noodles just don't do it for me.

But I'm 72 and on zero meds. That's pretty rare these days.

Bob

PS And yes, food is expensive. When I was a child working as a bag-boy in a grocery store, a woman bought $50 worth of groceries. It took two carts to wheel it out. She had a VW Beetle. We filled the trunk the back seat, the floor in the back, the front riders seat, the floor in front of that, and to get it all in she drove away with one bag on her lap.

Inflation eats away at our savings, but it benefits the big banks.

The rate of inflation was pretty stable until Nixon took the USA off the gold standard, allowing our currency to fluctuate, and the rate has since been controlled by the Fed Reserve Bank, and remember, banks like inflation so the rate of inflation is regulated as the highest rate the people will stand for.

At least that's what an economics professor told our class when I was taking some night courses.

Last edited by Bob-a-rama : Mon, May-06-19 at 07:23. Reason: PS
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  #26   ^
Old Mon, May-06-19, 09:50
WereBear's Avatar
WereBear WereBear is offline
Posts: 11,831
 
Plan: Epi-Paleo/IF
Stats: 220/126/150 Female 67
BF:
Progress: 134%
Location: USA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Calianna
Not only do they not realize what they're doing to themselves metabolically, they don't realize that they'd be a lot more satisfied for a lot longer on the meat than the chips, even though the chips take up a lot more room in their bags, so to them the chips look like a lot more food for the money.


Conventional eaters would be shocked at my coming-up-on-four-months-old ketogenic plan. I buy packages of meat which range from $4 (on sale!) to $12 (big slab of chuck) and my other items like sour cream, avocado, bacon etc are all expensive.

Except when that is all a person eats, and the appetite lowers, and I donít need to eat THREE meals to be satisfied.
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  #27   ^
Old Mon, May-06-19, 12:14
Calianna's Avatar
Calianna Calianna is offline
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Posts: 1,242
 
Plan: Atkins-ish (hypoglycemia)
Stats: 000/000/000 Female 63
BF:
Progress: 50%
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob-a-rama
I don't use the self-scanners, figuring I'm helping to save someone's job. Also, it's like I'm doing free labor for the store. Give me a 5% discount for using the scanner, and I might be very tempted.

---
I'm a self scan attendant, so ironically, you'd be saving my job by using self scan. I'm too old and decrepit at this point to physically handle all the lifting required on regular register - forget even trying to do all the lifting and hauling required in other depts of the store. So those who do self scan are actually providing job security for me.



Quote:
~snip~

I think the reason they keep rearranging the products in a grocery store is to make you wander around, hoping you will see something you don't usually buy and put it in your cart.
Part of it is likely to keep people guessing, so they see more tempting products as they're looking for their tried and true.

But a big part of it is that there are sooo many new products available all the time that they need to make room for them somehow. There is a "reset team" in our store nearly every day, rearranging the shelves to make room for new products, while removing discontinued products. Some are discontinued by our company, meaning our stores simply don't sell them any more. Others are discontinued or replaced with a new version by the manufacturer. Either way, there needs to be some kind of logic to the arrangement of merchandise, so even if the new product is the same brand as the old products, they can't just replace the discontinued size of (say for instance) canned peaches with the new size of canned peaches - the new cans won't fit on the shelves the exact same way as the old ones did, so a lot of rearrangement needs to be done to use the available space most efficiently.



Sometimes an item or even an entire category of items ends up in a completely different aisle, because that's where it fits. This is why marshmallows were at one point moved from the candy aisle to the baking aisle, and then with a reset a couple of years later, moved back to the candy aisle. This is also why dried fruit is now found in the produce dept of our store, instead of in the baking aisle - there just wasn't enough room to display the variety of dried fruit in the baking aisle any more.



~~~~~~~~~



I've often read that the entire reason for locating the milk at the rear of the store, as far as possible from the entrance is to make sure customers need to pass by so many other items they might be tempted to buy, even though all they came to the store to buy was milk.



In part, I'm sure that's true, or at least a happy coincidence, but it's also because milk is extremely perishable, and needs to be kept chilled all the time. The back of the store just happens to be as close as possible to the loading dock where the milk is delivered by refrigerated truck, so the few feet between the loading dock and the refrigerated unit at the back of the store means less time spent at room temperature. The refrigerated dairy storage unit is usually directly accessible to restock the milk display from behind, without removing the milk from the dairy cooler room. That means once the milk is in the refrigerated dairy cooler, it's never in an un-refrigerated area until the moment the customer removes it from the display, and puts it in his cart, which makes a huge difference in maintaining freshness.
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  #28   ^
Old Mon, May-06-19, 18:07
Bob-a-rama's Avatar
Bob-a-rama Bob-a-rama is offline
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Plan: Keto (Atkins Induction)
Stats: 230/179/185 Male 5' 11"
BF:
Progress: 113%
Location: Florida
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If a grocery store is not using psychology to get people to buy more than they came in for, they are missing a great opportunity. And if a competitor uses that strategy, they will gain market share over the one who doesn't.

In business, I remember, the only reason to be in business is to make money --- and to find out why things happen, follow the money.

I've read (don't know how true it is) that the most profitable items are at eye level, and the things children like most are at their eye level. It would be foolish to arrange the shelves any other way IMHO.

Calianna, if I knew you were at my store, I'd use the scanner.

But for one person tending the scanners, it would take 4 or more cashiers to take care of the number of scanning customers in some stores.

I try not to use robots that take people's jobs away. But then I guess I'm taking another's job away by doing that. Oh well, my intentions are good.

Bob
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  #29   ^
Old Mon, May-06-19, 21:17
Calianna's Avatar
Calianna Calianna is offline
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Posts: 1,242
 
Plan: Atkins-ish (hypoglycemia)
Stats: 000/000/000 Female 63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob-a-rama
If a grocery store is not using psychology to get people to buy more than they came in for, they are missing a great opportunity. And if a competitor uses that strategy, they will gain market share over the one who doesn't.

In business, I remember, the only reason to be in business is to make money --- and to find out why things happen, follow the money.

I've read (don't know how true it is) that the most profitable items are at eye level, and the things children like most are at their eye level. It would be foolish to arrange the shelves any other way IMHO.

Calianna, if I knew you were at my store, I'd use the scanner.

But for one person tending the scanners, it would take 4 or more cashiers to take care of the number of scanning customers in some stores.

I try not to use robots that take people's jobs away. But then I guess I'm taking another's job away by doing that. Oh well, my intentions are good.

Bob


Oh yeah, they definitely take advantage of every possible way to get people to buy more, and yes, you're exactly right about the most profitable items being displayed at eye level, with kid-centric items displayed at their eye level. It's just that some tactics (such as the milk being at the back) are also happy coincidences that what works out best for keeping the item fresh and safe, also helps to increase impulse buys.

It's kind of you to say you'd use self scan if I was at your store.

Many people use self scan because they're under the false assumption that it's a faster way to checkout. Unfortunately, with the way that the self scan registers operate, the actual transaction takes longer:

Scan item - bar code information is sent to server.
Server looks up information on item price, and relays it back to the register.
Put item in bagging area.
After item settle in bagging area, weight of item added to bagging area is sent to server.
Server confirms that weight in it's computerized records of last item scanned is the same weight as was just added to the bagging area.
Server then signals the register to allow the next item to be scanned.

Rinse and repeat for every single item in your order.

At a regular register it's possible to scan as fast as you can pass each item over the scanner, since it only needs to send price information back to the regular register before allowing the cashier to scan the next item. So in reality, self scan takes about 4 times as long as scanning those items at a regular register, since you can scan as fast as you can pass the items over the scanner at a regular register.

If you only have a few items, and there are lines at the regular registers, it'll still be a good bit quicker to use self scan.

According to some corporate front end managers, at our store, about 1/3 of total $$ sales go through self scan, but since it's a 24 hour store, that also includes overnights when there's no regular cash register open, as well as the varying number of regular registers open during the day (more cashiers scheduled during times of day when it's likely to be busier).
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  #30   ^
Old Tue, May-07-19, 06:22
DaisyDawn's Avatar
DaisyDawn DaisyDawn is offline
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Posts: 284
 
Plan: relaxed carnivore
Stats: 140/123.2/130 Female 66
BF:
Progress: 168%
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkloots
HI, Calianna. Since I've only used about a teaspoon of the xanthan (and I forget what for!) I know it will last a while. Thanks for the advice about gravy, which I haven't even thought about making in any form for years! Perhaps I'll see about using more of that thickener. You might start a Xanthan Gum thread in the recipe section to help others figure this out.

As for the traffic through the grocery store: not long ago a major grocery discount chain opened a brand new store in one of the "food deserts" near my home. (That is, an area of poverty underserved by healthy food sources.). I was excited about the convenience. But when I walked in the door, I was shocked: the entire first aisle, which you were forced to walk all the way down before reaching the main part of the store, was junk food. Chips, crackers, candy, etc. That was a long walk of temptation. I've never seen an "ordinary" grocery store arranged this way, and I strongly suspect an understandable, but somehow evil, marketing strategy.


I'm a hard core Aldi shopper and that's how their older stores are set up. You walk in and immediately it's the fancy chocolates on the right, alcohol on the left. Then it's chips/snack stuff (popcorn, pretzels etc) on the right, crackers on the left. Then on the right it goes to trail mixes, nuts, dried fruit; left goes to granola bars, poptarts, oatmeal and pancake mixes/syrups. Then the right goes to snack cakes (generic Little Debbies stuff), pudding/fruit cups and then condiments, and things like olives and specialty vinegars finishes the isle out. The left side finishes with boxed cereals. This is what I hit every time I get groceries

However, their new store layout is completely different-the first isle is fresh produce, followed by meat and cheese. They're slowly swapping out the layouts in my area, the store I go to now is going to get a completely new store this fall and they're ripping the old one down. I drive 30 minutes one way to get there but it's the closest one to me. I just found out last week though that a brand new one is coming into the town 10 minutes from me, they're breaking ground this fall and will open next spring. I'm soooo excited

Last edited by DaisyDawn : Tue, May-07-19 at 09:16.
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