Grocery shopping in Liberty Village versus Nunavut

We go through a lot of milk in our little household. BF drinks one or two tall glasses of it every day, and we put it in our coffee/tea/smoothies. I’d estimate that we buy two 4L bags per week. Milk’s good for you, according to the Dairy Farmers of Canada, so I’m okay with buying all this milk. What I am not okay with is the price of milk at the Metro in Liberty Village.

A 4L bag of milk is $5.69. At two per week, 52 weeks a year, that works out to almost $600/year for milk. If I go to the Shopper’s around the corner, or to grocery stores just a little bit out of the downtown core, or to No Frills (I’m guessing), the cost is anywhere from $3.99 to $4.29. That’s a big difference, especially considering how much we go through. But, I’m a sucker for convenience, and since we have to get the stuff all the time, I normally just stick with Metro, even though it peeves me off that it’s so much more expensive.

On a related note, BF went to Nunavut this past weekend for work. (Trust me, you’ll see my point in a moment.) While he was there he stopped by a grocery store, and much to my pleasure, snapped some pictures of a few common items along with their prices.

Tropicana in Nunavut
$16.99 for juice. I don’t buy this stuff, but I think it’s around $7ish here.

Tropicana Apple Juice in NunavutMore expensive juice.

Breyers Ice Cream in NunavutThis ice cream is normally around $6 or $7 at Metro.

Pizza Pops in NunavutAt $17.19 for a 12 pack of pizza pops, that works out to $1.43 a pop.

I know it’s a bit like comparing apples and oranges – food going to Nunavut has to travel a lot farther to reach store shelves, and the markup in price covers those costs. But, wow! I never expected to see such extreme differences in pricing. I can’t imagine paying $15.99 for ice cream. I don’t even like paying $7 for the more premium brands. I try not to buy the stuff since it’s junk, but the odd time I do pick it up, it’s on sale for $3.99 or something.

BF and his co-worker also went out to eat, and the cost of food in restaurants was no different. $14 for eggs, $16 for a burger with no fries. I’m guessing that housing is pretty cheap, though. BF said that some people get isolation pay from their company which could be upwards of $10K/year, but if products are that much more expensive, then it probably evens out in the end.

So, next time I’m at Metro picking up milk, I’ll be grateful that it only costs $5.69, and not $15 or whatever absurd price it is in Nunavut. Count your blessings, right?

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4 Responses to Grocery shopping in Liberty Village versus Nunavut

  1. Cassie says:

    This brings back memories. My grandparents used to live in Iqaluit and Tuktoyaktuk when I was a kid. My grandfather would tell us about the cost of groceries up there. They were insane! The further north you go, the more expensive it gets. There is a reason why people up north drive south to buy things. My parents live in Northern BC, and they’ll come to Edmonton to buy large items. I used to work at a grocery store up where they live, and I’d have people come down from the Yukon and spend $1000 on groceries because they were stocking up for the next 6 months or so.

    • Obsessive Compulsive Daniela says:

      Interesting, it’s similar to going to Costco to stock up on bulk items, people just have to drive a lot farther to get the deals!

  2. Wow… that’s a lot of $$!! $17 for pizza pockets! we should stop complaining 🙂

    I went to Haida Gwaii last year and was shocked by the cost of the bell peppers there. We are lucky that the cost of eating isn’t so high.

    Does your BF get a remove allowance for heading up there for work?

    • Obsessive Compulsive Daniela says:

      He was there Fri-Sun, and he received a per diem while he’s away. I think it’s like $75/day to cover food and miscellaneous items. Sometimes he has money left over, but this time, definitely not!

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