Sunday, April 26, 2009


Today I went on my first trip to Costco, with my sister who has a membership. I don't know what to think about the place. I was overwhelmed by the large-ness of everything, and trying to calculate what items were actually a good deal in their oversized portions. I bought a few things that totaled to a significant portion of our $52 weekly limit, but these things will last much longer than a week:

-Large jar of all natural almond butter: $6.39
-5 lb. bag of frozen corn: $4.99
-2 loaves of multi-grain bread: $4.59
-Huge jar of all natural salsa: $4.99

I would never get a membership, because we don't eat a lot of the bulk frozen meats and pre-packaged dinners they sell, much less have room for them in our freezer, and the produce is sold in quantities too large for us to eat before it would go bad. I can see how it might be a good deal for large families....but....there is something that feels wrong to me about a place like that.

Maybe it's just because I associate Costco with Sam's club, which I'm pretty sure is owned by Wal-Mart, which I wouldn't want to give my money to. I haven't done any research on the company so I can't say anything for sure. All I know is I felt lost in there and longed for my little co-op with handmade signs where no one checks your receipt at the door.

Does anyone have any info or opinions on whether this place is good or bad?

On the upside, I bought a tomato plant! It was $12 and I have no idea if this was a good deal because I'm clueless when it comes to plants and growing things, even though I wish I had a huge garden, but it was worth it for me because now I don't have to go searching for one. We're keeping it inside tonight because it's supposed to get below 40 degrees. Here it is, Peeko de Guy-O (named by Nathan with 2 glasses of organic Riesling in him!)



  1. In my opinion, anything not local is "bad" but there is a scale of how bad, for example how they treat the employees and where they draw their ethical lines. I'd love to know what you find out.

  2. wow. that tomato plant is huge.

    way too huge for minnesota without plant steroids.

  3. Aimee - I just did my first bit of research, reading the Wikipedia entry on Costco. The company is headquartered in Washington, so not local to me, and I would highly doubt they source their products from local vendors. Two positives I learned though - their workers get paid more and a much higher percentage of them have health insurance compared to Target and Wal-Mart. Also, they reduce waste by keeping products in their original bulk packaging, not providing bags to customers, and using skylights to light the warehouses when possible.

    Alissa - oh no! You think Peeko de Guy-O is on steriods? What if the plant was started somewhere else and shipped here? Do you think the tomatoes will be ok?

  4. From what I have heard, Costco is a good employer.

    I love Costco, although, at least at the one near us, it is usually a fairly horrendous shopping experience. But Nick eats a lot of meat, and we get cheese and hummus and stuff like that. And I've gotten jeans and socks and fleece that I've loved. And since I hate grocery stores, I love that we can get enough toilet paper and detergent etc to last for months.

  5. Hahaha you've gotten socks that you loved! Like, gym socks or black work socks? I hate sock shopping and mine always get holes...I swear I don't have jagged toenails...right now I'm wearing my "favorite" longest lasting socks ever: grey sport socks I bought 7 years ago while living in Budapest because I was too impatient to figure out how to do the laundry there so just kept buying new socks.
    Will have to put that on my Costco list for next time...=)

  6. I buy very few things at Costco but do buy produce when I can find organic. They have it sometimes.
    We love the Coleman chickens and can find them only at Costco.
    We have to go when they are serving their crap for tasting. I don't eat it but the husband does. Costco has improved greatly in the past few years. When I first started going they stored their stinky tires in the center of the warehouse, now they put them in a separate area. Instant headache for me.
    I like to buy paperbacks at Costco. Best price I can find. I have never been to a Sam's or Wall mart and don't intend to go.