Why is it that the fewer ingredients it has, the more expensive it is?
It just doesn't make sense!  I suppose they're being marketed as specialty, ultra-healthy foods, but still.  You would think that fewer ingredients would mean lower prices, right?  But as you know, the processed big brand/store brand foods all have long ingredient lists, but they're relatively cheaper; whereas the specialty foods with a much shorter and much healthier ingredient list are much more expensive.  I get the whole economy of scale thing, where the per unit cost goes down, if you ramp up production, but that can't be everything, right?  Do people just jack up the price, when they market things as healthy, gluten-free, etc.?  To me, that's how food should be, and there shouldn't really be any premium to it, at least no justifiable premium.  Anyway, I'm ranting.

It is frigging expensive to eat healthy in this country.
I find the opposite is often true for store brands. Often they have the shortest ingredients list, especially for "staple" foods, at least in my experience. It was also the no name brand (at least here in Canada) that took the BPA out of their liners first.

Also, house brands often use "B" grade foods, which is one of the reasons why it costs so much less. It doesn't mean it's bad food, but it's not pretty food when it comes into the plant. Superstore/Loblaws has recently started selling B and C grade produce ("Commercial grade") and I love it. The peppers might all be weird shapes and sizes (kinda like what I would grow in the garden!), but they're 1/2 the price of A grade. Apples too, they're odd sizes but in good condition and taste the same and A LOT cheaper.

Also, gluten-free foods are expensive for a reason. If you're making anything that requires gluten-free flours, they cost a lot. Xantham Gum too, which is added to give gluten-free foods texture. But many, many just plain old regular brands are also gluten-free, most people don't realize. Heinz ketchup, for example, is gluten-free. Anything Kraft will label for gluten, so if it's not labelled for gluten you can be reasonably sure it's GF. Most Club House products are also GF, as well as many Hunts tomato products (not all, you have to check the lists online) and most Bushes products. Cheerios recently started making their product out of GF oats, and they cost the same as they always have (same with Brown Rice Krispies).

The reality is that if you want to eat healthy, and especially GF, you should be moving away from processed foods anyway. Then labelling and price sort of become non-issue. Brown rice, soaked and cooked whole grains (not wheat, rye or spelt, cross-contamination on oats) such as millet, teff, GF oats, cornmeal, dry beans, veggies etc. Those are all GF foods. Corn tortillas are cheap and easy to make yourself from the special flour.

Also, if you're in the US especially, be aware that you do not pay the true cost of your food. The dairy industry and soy/corn especially are heavily subsidized, although many other industries are too to a lesser degree. Canadians often complain that dairy is so much cheaper in the US, but that's because of the subsidy primarily (often via corn/soy for feed, but they also receive direct subsidies). High-fructose corn syrup is also very, very inexpensive for that reason, which drives down the cost of many processed foods below what you would pay for "all natural", unsubsidized foods.

So there's at least part of your answer.

Part of it here is the economic scale; "organic" producers tend to be smaller, and so have to charge more to make a profit. Also, there's the marketing factor.

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