I am in no way affiliated with Whole Foods, this subject applies to anyplace that sells organic and anyone who buys organic I suppose. I love Whole Foods, but I can be one of their biggest critics as well. My biggest complaint being replacing the olive oil with canola oil at their food bar and in their prepared foods. Canola is a super big no no for me. That's not the issue here, but had to get that off my chest.
Anyhoo, I was contemplating, "how expensive are they really"? Since I am now a concise blogger, I can get straight to the point.
I was challenging myself to get my weekly Whole foods bill below $100 a week, and I can do it on a good week. When I buy liberally, or have to buy non food items, i.e. shaving cream laundry detergent, bla bla, I can get up to $150 a week.
There are a lot of things I buy bulk, mainly my smoothie ingredients. I can look at my online records, I can get a very good feel for the monthly cost of those. So it is quite easy for me to break down my numbers.
Here they are as concise as I can get them, everything for my 1 person household:
Average Weekly Grocery Bill (including non food items such as shaving cream, dishwashing liquid etc) $ 130 average
Add $50 per week for incidental runs to the store, like veggies I run out of, or whatever. $50 is pretty liberal, but I'd rather overestimate here than under estimate.
Bulk items (purchased mostly online), $100 per month. Mainly for my smoothies, cacao, maca, goji berries, joint formulas, raw honey, coconut oil, everything else is about $100 per month. Once again very liberal, because some months I don't spend more than $30 on incidentals since I buy bulk to last 3 or 4 months.
So the Quick math would be:
$130 + 50 per week for entire grocery bill (food and non-food) x 4 weeks = $720 per month (being very liberal, I can get it under $500 a month if I need to)
Plus $100 per month bulk items = $820 per month for entire food and non food budget.
I consistently eat 4 meals (two power smoothies, plus two food meals) a day, plus 2 snacks of nuts and fruit which can get expensive, due to cost of nuts, organic fruit and so forth. Let's roll those two snacks a day into the equivalent of 1 meal, so that's basically 5 small meals a day.
5 meals a day X 30 days a month is 150 meals a month average. Take away 10 meals a month that I might miss or when I go out or whatever. Let's call it 140 meals a month.
So it's $820 / 140 meals per month, which comes out to $5.85 per meal. Keep in mind this calculation includes the full grocery bill for all non-food items, so it seems like the actual cost could actually $1 less per meal, perhaps $4.85 to $5. I compare that to what co-workers pay for their lunch, or for their takeout for dinner, which can easily run $8 to $13 per meal.
So for me, shopping at stores such as Whole Foods ain't as bad as they make it out to be. I get the gut feeling that some people use the assumed high cost of healthy eating to be their "excuse" to not eat "healthy".
In conclusion, here is a direct quote from my Facebook page, where I'm talking about Whole Foods in my "Facebook Diary"
"My favorite place to shop in the world Whole Foods Market. Either you love it or you hate cause they are so expensive. But the best source for organic and healthy foods. Todays damage, three bags of Groceries…$168.52
…but look at it this way , either $168.52 for groceries
or treatment for high cholesterol $32,918.21,
or treatment for diabetes $122,724.56,
or treatment for cancer $319,661.21,
but the cost of good health, PRICELESS" ~dw~