It’s been snowing here in the east of Scotland! Thankfully Monday isn’t a day I have earmarked for shopping. In fact, on Day 2 I am feeling this ‘giving up the supermarket’ malarkey is a bit of a breeze but, as I’ve said, I typically only visit the supermarket twice a week so it shouldn’t be hurting yet.
The postman brings an envelope from our usual supermarket decorated with Easter Eggs and chicks and containing ’12 Exclusive Coupons’. They are so tailored to my usual shopping purchases (exactly the brand of nappies we use and even the convenience meals that I guiltily sneak into the trolley when I haven’t had time to cook) that I feel spied upon. Of course I’m aware that supermarkets are renowned for using their reward card schemes for collecting data on consumers but now that I’m avoiding them and opening my eyes to some of their dirtier tricks (horsemeat anyone?), I feel more disgruntled than usual. Later in the day I receive an email from the same supermarket. As I click automatically to delete it, I realise that I received another very recently, possibly yesterday. I have no memory of what it was about but it makes me wonder how often this supermarket is popping into my consciousness even if only for a few seconds. Yesterday I drove behind a bus advertising the local branch of my same supermarket – before this experiment I’d never noticed that either…
At lunchtime I realise that my usual washing powder (the supermarket’s own brand of non-bio) is running low. I have used it for years as it doesn’t seem to affect my very sensitive skin and I suppose because it is good value for money. I decide that this purchase should be made online. It will save me carrying home a heavy box and, now that I’ve been forced to confront the issue, I should probably be looking for a washing powder that has actually been produced for those with skin issues.
It takes me about 1 minute of internet research to find a product that has been allergy tested, is eco-friendly, vegan and not tested on animals! For 2kg it is almost double the price of my usual powder and that’s before delivery but if I like it there is the option to buy in bulk which will bring the price down a bit and will save me on the delivery charge. I use www.ethicalsuperstore.com which seems to meet some high ethical standards and has a great range of other products that would meet many of my shopping needs.
Being new to this ‘supermarket-free’ game I welcome any comments you might have on internet sites I might use that would meet my criteria or indeed if I mention any ‘shopping practices’ that you think break my own rules!