December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas – Are you eating? Let’s talk groceries!

Merry Christmas! I hope Santa delivered you the mortgage bailout federally guided assistance that you asked for!

I’m sure you’re feasting today, so I’m going to be lazy and reprint the post from Thanksgiving. Have a great day!

Last year I had the ultimate Thanksgiving Price Shootout on this blog: Using safeway.com’s website, I compared the prices of a hypothetical Thanksgiving shopping list between the Bay Area and Seattle/Redmond area.

Also known as “Zune vs iPod, Wii vs PS3″ since Sony/Apple are either based in, or have significant operations in the Bay Area, versus Nintendo and Microsoft which are in Seattle/Redmond. I guess I could’ve also called it Google vs Microsoft, but that seems so cliche.

Anyhoo, here are the prices for this year! Again, I compared prices of the exact same item in the Bay Area vs Seattle/Redmond. I also tried my best to pick items without coupon deals (the only exception was stuffing – crazy sale on stuffing right now!). Also, if you compare to last year, the prices won’t match – in part because I may have picked different brands/items last year. For example, this year I went for Roma tomatoes – I think last year I picked beefsteak tomatoes.

That said, it’s the same general list otherwise. Here we go!

Item Bay Area Redmond Difference
Turkey $24.21 $24.21 0%
Yellow Onions $0.74 $0.59 -25%
Celery $0.99 $1.19 17%
Cranberries $3.99 $3.49 -14%
Oranges $4.99 $4.99 0%
Garlic $0.50 $0.69 28%
Lemons $1.50 $0.99 -52%
Green Beans $1.49 $1.26 -18%
Pork Sausage $3.69 $3.19 -16%
Eggs $3.79 $3.39 -12%
Milk $4.59 $2.69 -71%
Corn $1.49 $1.26 -18%
Olive Oil $12.99 $8.99 -44%
Chicken Broth $3.25 $2.79 -16%
Flour $2.79 $2.49 -12%
Sugar $3.49 $3.49 0%
Ginger $0.80 $1.40 43%
Pecans $6.89 $6.19 -11%
Salt $0.79 $0.79 0%
Rosemary $1.99 $1.99 0%
Honey $3.00 $2.50 -20%
Black Olives $1.39 $1.29 -8%
Green Onion $0.99 $0.66 -50%
Pumpkin Pie $6.49 $5.49 -18%
Spinach $3.69 $3.29 -12%
Grape Jelly $3.51 $2.95 -19%
Butter $2.49 $2.39 -4%
Biscuits $2.15 $1.55 -39%
Tomatoes $0.60 $0.46 -30%
Orange Juice $6.79 $5.69 -19%
Potatoes $3.99 $3.69 -8%
Carrots $1.49 $1.29 -16%
Rice $3.66 $3.47 -5%
Grey Poupon $4.42 $3.39 -30%
French Fries $4.39 $3.59 -22%
Ketchup $3.29 $2.79 -18%
Stuffing $2.00 $1.50 -33%
Ham $4.79 $3.99 -20%

Difference: Bay Area is 16% more expensive

(BTW, I’ll never understand why milk is so much more expensive here…)

This is pretty disappointing frankly. Last year the difference was 20%. This means either that Seattle/Redmond has gotten more expensive, or the Bay Area has gotten cheaper.

At this rate, the prices might be the same – that would be a disaster! Would high housing prices, and a 9.3% state income tax (that keeps our roads in fantastic condition) be enough to keep the Bay Area as special as it is?

Of course if you leave the the Bay Area, you’ll find that they don’t have any Chinese restaurants, Korean restaurants, Japanese restaurants, Thai restaurants, Vietnamese restaurants, gays, smart people, guacamole, tech companies, snow sports, hiking, mountains, liberals, In-n-outs, or 9 months of sun. And let’s not forget our cheap housing, amazing public schools, great roads, low taxes, and lack of traffic.

Here’s to hoping that 2008 will be more expensive!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Comments (7) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:41 am

7 Responses to “Merry Christmas – Are you eating? Let’s talk groceries!”

  1. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    Had raisin bread toast that was given to us, so neener neener!

  2. New Zealand Renter Says:

    Seriously, as I sit typing on a cool, windy, rainy summer day, there is some value in those 9 months of sun. In the Bay Area, the bicycling conditions were world class. Here, it can rain any day of the year, the roads are crap, and the murderous drivers are either drunk or meth crazed. I am seriously considering returning to Cupertino – to rent of course.

  3. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    Kiwi – Come on down! Rents are funny, a room in Cuppachino is about $500 a month, but so’s one out here in Prescott AZ which isn’t nearly the Bay Area as far as possible jobs, public transpo, and opportunities like farmer’s markets, swapmeets, places to play street music or sketch people, etc.

    and the dumpster diving out here sux.

    There’s no gurantee I might not be back out in the area once the weather warms up and I’m able to do well enough out here to procure a vehicle to get out there with, and street skills that I can live on.

    I think a key is to be spread out – put the important stuff in a storage, rent a room, and if you run a small biz and need space run that out of a 3rd place.

    Damn I miss Cello Joe…..

  4. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    Oh and forgot get an old toyota van and have that set up to live in as a 4th base and bug-out option.

  5. rick Says:

    Hm.. I thought roads were not supported by the income taxes but DMV payments? Not to mention they are constantly misusing the payments for other purposes.

  6. susan Says:

    I actually like the Bend/REdmond area, however I found it to be very white. Trying to find ethnic food in grocery stores was difficult at times, and minorities are either hidden or non-existent (at least 3 years ago that was what I was seeing). I want my children to grow up in a more diverse area, and am willing to pay the price for that. Of course, I have a garden and grow some of my own food, so its not quite sooooo bad.

  7. burbed Says:

    Actually I was referring to Redmond, WA – not Redmond, OR.


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