Saturday, February 14, 2009

What Is In Your Shopping Cart?

Yesterday we made a run to Queretaro to hit the box stores. We haven't been since.....I think it was before Thanksgiving. I was wondering how stores like Costco might be doing with the dollar exchanging at 14.30 to 14.70 pesos in the last week or so. I had a long shopping list. I also wanted to check out the prices and to see if there were fewer customers. Not fewer customers that we could tell.

I didn't do an extensive check of prices. I only looked at the items that I was interested in except for laptop computers. The reason I checked them out was because we walked by and I had recently checked on some HP laptop prices. I was shocked. They were almost double the amount of the on-line price. Why? They are made in Mexico. I obviously don't understand tariffs and duties, the Mexican government or the goblal economy.

I wanted to buy some steaks, ribeye or NY strip. The cost of the meat seemed to me to be about the same per kilo as the last time we shopped. So far the price hasn't been affected by the exchange rate. In fact, I didn't notice a big difference in food prices except for a few things.

One big bummer was that Costco didn't have Kirkland butter yesterday. I've written before about the Mexican butter, which I don't like. I couldn't find dry roasted nuts. I need those for a appetizer that I like to make. And there were a few other things like that. But there always are some things that you can't get on the day that you want them. One thing I didn't buy was a couple of New Zealand racks of lamb. You don't see New Zealand rack of lamb very often in Costco. The price wasn't too bad. Rack of lamb makes such an easy dinner party. Rack of lamb, couscous and asparagus. Easy-peasy. I'm sure I'll regret not buying them but I had already bought rock-cornish hens and I didn't think I could get it all in my little freezer.

Well the freezer and pantry are full and I'm ready to cook.....starting Monday.

12 comments:

Islagringo said...

Rack of lamb...easy peasy! You slay me. I am definitely coming to dinner when I finally show up in SMA.

Steve Cotton said...

I did a bit of Costco shopping today for the Mexico move. I bought an uninterruptible power supply and a portable hard drive for backups. I suspect they were both cheaper here than in Mexico. The UPS was made in China, the drive in Thailand. I hope customs does not look too closely.

Billie said...

Wayne, just let me know when you are coming and I'll definitely make dinner for you.

Steve, not only will they be cheaper in the USA but they could be hard to find here in MX and when found you will not have the choise of several brands and sizes. If you can take them out of the boxes and just stow them among other things. I've never had a problem with stuff like that but each time we cross the border it is a new adventure.

rdswinford said...

Billie
Can you believe, I never have shopped at COSTCO, partly because of the size and crowd and partly because I don't know my prices so can't tell if it is a bargain or not.

But I am glad you DIDN'T get the lamb, one because it was a very nongreen item, coming all the way from New Zealand (imagine the energy it took) and two I really like sheep.

The thread that is running through your blog begs the question of how the economy, weather patterns e.g. global warming will effect Mexico and how you eat and what you drink.

Rita

On Mexican Time said...

You just reminded me I have to renew my membership to Costco asap!It's overdue! Hehe.
Also, just wanted to mention...I know what your'e talking about with the mexican butter tidbit. I don't like it either, it tastes different. Very different!

Billie said...

Rita, not sure exactly what you are saying but this blog is not about major global issues, at least not conciously. I do agree with you that it is better to eat locally raised food and for the most part we do. I'm definitely an Omnivore. I don't know why Mexico doesn't provide lamb since they certainly raise sheep. When I occasionally find lamb in the meat market, it is usually too large a lamb and it is higher priced than the New Zealand lamb. Why do countries do that?

rdswinford said...

Well as I was reading your blog describing how you were missing the roasted peanuts and couldn't find the butter you wanted, I thought about availability in general with the extreme drought Texas and parts of Mexico are experiencing....nowadays when I shop the bill rarely drops to below 100$ even if I have only a few things....can't say that I haven't been able to find items, just that I am paying more for them.

r

Mexico Cooks! said...

Rdswinford, Costco in Mexico is one of those big box stores where you find Item A (the Kirkland butter, to use Billie's example) for several months, then without warning it goes missing for a month or so, and then equally suddenly it's back on the shelf in abundance. It's not about global warming or drought or anything that might seem logical--it's about Costco/Mexico's stocking practices.

Lots of stores in Mexico, big and small, have odd stocking methods. One store where I have shopped finally stocked a certain much sought-after item and sold out of it within a day or two. No more appeared on the shelves. When asked why, the manager replied, "I'm never going to stock that item again! I can't keep a supply of it in the store, it sells too fast!"

Billie, if you haven't tried Lurpak butter, you can get it at Mega, Superama, Wal-Mart, etc. It's far better than Kirkland, although it's also far more expensive. We've used Kirkland butter for several months because of the price difference, but much prefer Lurpak, either salted or unsalted.

Billie said...

Mexico Cook, It is the price issue for me as well in regard to the Lurpak butter. It is better than Kirkland but I'm not sure that it is better enough for the price difference.

John said...

Billie--I'm always nervous about trying to tke photos inside places like Costco, for fear a security person will throw me out. You have a lot of courage...

Erika Sidor said...

Oh! I forgot to mention that when I was down there, I finally understood what you had written in the past about butter! It really was very different...and what we have here in the USA is so GOOD.

Billie said...

John, I'm shooting from the hip. The camera is over my shoulder and I never even look at what I'm shooting. I do think you would get thrown out of most malls and stores in the USA.