## Grocery Shopping

Grocery shopping, or as I call it, my weekly contribution to the US economy. Whether it's a quick run for milk, or a major expedition, we all have to head off to the local food mart. They know this, and what's more, people who design/run grocery sto

### Just The Facts

1. A body's gotta eat!
2. This will cost you
3. They raised the price?! Again?!

### Necessities are located in the back.

All you need is some milk. Can't have your cereal without some moo juice now can ya? But can you run in, grab a carton, pay and leave? Of course not, because the milk is always located in the back of the store. As are the eggs, and the bread. This is so you'll pass through other sections, see something you need or think you'll need, and voila! it's added to your cart. This is how a simple trip to the store to buy a gallon of milk for \$5 somehow ends up costing you \$30.

### Look out for sales items

We've all fallen for the two for one price deal. Sometimes you can get a good deal, but most times all you're doing is getting two small boxes for the same price you'd pay if only you'd gotten one large package. Lets take cereal--nature's perfect food. You're at the store and you see that Sugar Ludes are on sale--2 for \$6.00! Yes! You love you some Sugar Ludes! And at only \$6.00 for two boxes? Hot damn! But wait a minute! How big are those boxes? Cereal boxes have gotten smaller in the past year or so, with the average weight of the actual product being around 11 ounces. Depending on your appetite, you could finish that box off in one sitting. Forget the sale item, and take a look at the larger box of Sugar Ludes in the aisle. The one pounder that costs around \$5.00. That would be your better buy.But on the other hand, those small 11 ounce boxes combined would give you 22 ounces, whereas the big box would only give you a pound, and if you're real lucky, a bit more. Either way, you're going to have take out a loan to pay for your sugar fix so this is a judgment call. Psych!

### Shelf place

This is big business, with companies jockeying for position. Prime real estate is at eye level, the low rent district is the bottom shelf, where the discounted and discontinued items go. Psychologists, marketers and merchants spend hours researching this. Eyes on the prize, literally. The next time you go to the store, check out some of the popular items--snacks, cereal, detergents. Which brands are on eye level? Bingo. Which brands are lower than whale crap? Very good--go get your gold star!