Friday, November 16, 2012

Standing on my soapbox Saturday

oops - meant to post this much earlier - pretend it's Saturday K?

Hi everyone - you didn't think I could skip a  week without going on about something did ya?

John does the groceries.  I was banned years and years ago, when grocery stores starting becoming mega stores actually - and I would walk around with my cart - cramming pillows and candles and dishes and decorations of every color and size into it - and John would get the actual food and we would meet at the cash - where he would promptly have a conniption fit on the spot....................

con·nip·tion  (k-npshn)
n. Informal
A fit of violent emotion, such as anger or panic. Also called conniption fit.

He was right and I was wrong ( one of the very rare incidents where I'll actually admit that by the way ) 
and so off he goes with a list in hand and he comes back with ONLY what's on that list....................
( if we need toilet paper - and I didn't write it down - he will NOT come back with toilet paper ) 
And I'm quite content with the arrangement - as long as I'm allowed to go to a market where I can actually hold
a piece of fruit in my hand - and so far Markets are tolerated ( even though I buy tons of flowers every time )

Ok - all this is just to let you know that I haven't been in a grocery store in you can imagine my horror when I saw this article in a newspaper....................

Contrary to the myth, living in the North doesn’t guarantee high wages. Inuit living in the territories make far less than non-Aboriginals in the same region — about $43,378 less. Within Inuit Nunangat, the traditional Inuit homeland, non-Aboriginals made an average of $50,128 according to 2005 Statistics Canada numbers. For Inuit, it was only $16,669.
For many that means living pay cheque to pay cheque, or in some cases welfare cheque to welfare cheque. And with grocery prices what they are, feeding one’s family comes before paying the bills, if a family can afford to eat at all.
Nunavut also has Canada’s youngest population with an average age of 24. Much of the population is too young to not wear diapers, let alone contribute to family income.
Admittedly I know very little about the Nunavut ( which is shameful unto itself really ) They live in the vast wilderness of Northern Canada - and we " southeners "  go on about our daily lives bitching and complaining about the high rising costs of just about everything.  BUT even I know that the Nanuvet ( we used to call them Eskimos and all I basically knew about them was that they kissed with their noses - probably b.s. but that's what we were told when we were kids  ) are natives to this land - meaning This land is your land - This land is my land - This land was THEIR LAND FIRST !!!  They are North American Natives - and when I see things like this I am truly disgusted with our behaviour.  If you are drinking hot coffee while reading this - pls put it down - I cannot be held responsible for you burning yourself.
On a typical Saturday morning shopping trip to the grocery store........................ 

a head of cabbage - I'm guessing they don't have cabbage rolls in them there parts too often

or stuffed green peppers - 10.25
red peppers would be caviar  16.89

8.15 for a small head of cauliflower - please note the word " SMALL " what would they charge for a large one? by the way a very large one was on sale this week for 99 cents here in my neighbourhood
( which is one of the wealthiest neighbourhoods in Canada - can you spell I.R.O.N.I.C. )

I wouldn't imagine they eat much fruit 13.08

a small jar of jam -
I'd spread whale fat on my toast before spending this kind of money
we can get a 30 pound turkey for this price -

probably 10 pieces of frozen chicken strips 37.59

small jar of peanut butter  17.59

short bread cookies anyone?
AND that's a generic brand!!!

don't know about the States - but here in Canada this product is advertised as
" Cheez Whiz adds Personality "
at 20.29 it would flush any personality I might have right down the toilet

I mean really?
one of the fundamentals?

and while beating your clothes against rocks in rivers might be a viable alternate solution anywhere else in the world - they can't do that - their rivers are frozen for much of the year...........................47.49
no kids sorry - I can't put juice in your lunch boxes -  at14.29 and 13.59 we'll stick with water

on second thought
maybe we'd better stick with juice

Dear God - 24 bottles of............................WATER 104.99
that's almost 4.50 a bottle
We pay that for 48 bottles

12 tins............................almost 7.00 a tin
Remind me to NEVER complain about the cost of coffee in Paris

Ok, c'mon now - reality check please?
Are you freaking kidding me?

And this next photo struck a chord deep down inside me - made me want to weep - hang my head in shame - write a letter to the government - scream in outrage - or rant on my blog...................
BABY FORMULA - notice the name Good Start?

Why are they being charged these outrageous prices you may ask?

“Most of the price is related to the cost of doing business in Northern Canada,” says Michael McMullen, Northwest’s executive vice president of Northern Canada retail.
He compares running a Giant Tiger in Winnipeg, where Northwest is based, to the Northern grocery store in Arviat, NU, just over the border from Manitoba. Transportation costs alone run $2.2 million for the year to keep the Arviat store stocked, compared to $198,000 at the local Winnipeg store.
Northern communities also require more space to store large sealift shipments and more overhead to pay for these large shipments.
“In most cases in remote communities, we would need to carry ten times the inventory to do the same level of business as in the south,” says McMullen.
McMullen says the Nutrition North program, which subsidizes healthy food sold by Northwest, has reduced food costs by 15 per cent.
Those savings only apply to items that are on the eligibility list, generally healthy, high-demand items. That list, however, is being reduced in October for some communities. Baby products and feminine hygiene products didn’t make the cut.
Last year Northwest did $1.49 billion in sales across their stores, including some in Alaska and the Caribbean, earning them $57.9 million in revenue. 
Now even if you failed every single math course during your tenure at school - you would still understand that if the cost to ship is roughly 2.2 million and you earned 57.9 million in revenue - then your mark up - ok let me see - 58,000,000. divided by 2.2 = CRIMINAL....... So first we take their land - then we destroy their land in the name of progress, taking away their means to survive - and then we say - Ok it's time you adapt to our ways - and then - and then - we open big box grocery stores - and tell them " it's all here - everything you could want ".  There's a stigma here with Inuits and Nanuvets - people, for the most part, consider them shiftless, lazy, and although it's true that there's an extremely high percentage of alcoholics amongst them - how would you react to a simple homemade dinner at those prices ( there are 2 other fundamental meals required in a day for a healthy existance I might add)
With despair I would think.
I think I would end up an alcoholic too......................
I love you Canada - I'm fiercely proud to stand behind my flag.  We're progressive - and fair - and " just " for the most part, so..........................
because I'm having a conniption fit over this

The information from this post was sourced HERE


  1. I don't know how anyone could possibly be able to afford to be an alcoholic either. But in the name of free enterprise, I'm becoming a cabbage farmer next spring. When I make my first $57 million profit, I pledge to absorb, deduct, and donate the $2 million from my cabbage business that it takes to truck their food to them. Because that just seems the right thing to do. But oh, I forgot, there is probably some law against any or all of that.


  2. This is possibly one of the saddest, yet best, entries I've read. You can get on your soapbox any time! As an American with strong Canadian ties, I am appalled. Northwest should be ashamed. Thank you for the info. I'm forwarding this on!!

  3. And yet we import inexpensive crap from Asia (which is much further away I would think) all the time. If they can ship stuff so cheaply, why can't we?

    So many discrepancies and unfairness in this world, it's unbelievable.

  4. Hi Susan!

    I'm following you back and just love your humor, because I can tell that if things in the states were that much we would be starving...Are you freakin kidding was right...LOL

    Looking forward to more great posts!

    1. thanks so much Denyse - ( although this is really not so very funny ) I'm so embarrassed that the Canadian government is allowing this to happen!
      And don't worry, I only rant once a week - the rest of the week you can find me working on makeovers lol

  5. Oh dear Suzan--I just cannot comprehend those prices and that situation. How tragic--It makes me feel guilty and I live in the States. Greed is such an ugly thing.

    I do enjoy your blog so much.

  6. CRAP ! That's highway robbery ! LEGAL highway robbery ! And a darn shame. I know that there is the problem of alcoholism in our Native American lands here in America as well. But they have access to our grocery stores, I imagine. We love to go to New Mexico, and I adore learning more about the Native heritage. I often feel very ashamed of being a white person because of what was taken from them. I saw similar natives when we were in Alaska a few years ago. One drunk on the street. I felt so horrible. But I guess a part of that is their choice. I know that groceries are expensive in Alaska, or at least parts of Alaska, because of the shipping. Many places are only accessible by airplane. But it's awful to see that these people you speak of cannot to anything about this. What can be done, Suzan ?

  7. Seriously. I don't even know what to say, Suzan! I do know that I feel guilty about buying my groceries so frivolously after reading this. I will never gripe about my grocery bill again.

    xoxo laurie

  8. Evil! It's difficult to even grasp these prices...and I cannot think of anyone that could possibly afford to buy any of it. Sickening isn't it? We, in the U.S. , give millions & billions to other countries and don't even care for our own. The recent situation in the N.E. has proven it! many countries did you see come to our aid? Nada, zero, zilch ~ :(

    I agree with you and someone in the gov't should change this immediately!

  9. Disgusting. We have a friend from Nunavut (his father is the chief) and my husband was up there a few years back hunting with him and his family. It was a huge honour for Larry to be invited to join their spring hunt. They were walrus and seal hunting and every single bit of the animals are used by the families. With prices like that, they need to hunt to survive.
    Larry told me back then how expensive the food is up there, for the reason you mentioned. It doesn't make sense. And makes me wish there was something we can do.

  10. Hi Suzan!!!

    Yep...another one that I've just read. Sorry!!! All I can say to this is...

    ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!!!!!!

    How would a person that has children manage? Say a family of 5...It would be crazy to try and feed them. I'd move down here if that was me. Maybe not as far as Vancouver, but, just down more.



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