Eclectic commentary from a progressive voice in the red state

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

As the Grocers Turn - an Amarillo Soap Opera

The Amarillo media is all-awash with the news that Albertsons is purchasing United supermarkets lock-stock-and-barrel. The commentary over at the corporate media center on Harrison Street is replete with Albertsons-bashing and lamentations. I’m surprised people haven’t flooded into the streets to rend and tear their garments while gnashing their teeth.

I contacted Albertsons by way of its website to see if I could elicit a response about all of the negative comments being posted on the local corporate rag website. I have yet to hear back, which disappoints me because I would hope that the commentators are wrong about seeing service diminish. My experience at the local Albertsons has been positive, and I am finding it has a better selection of organic products than does MarketStreet United.

However, there are other sources of good product and services in Amarillo. In particular, Natural Grocers comes to mind. It is owned by Vitamin Cottage, so let’s not have any illusions about it not being corporately owned. It is our source for some of the best organic products in Amarillo. I purposely did not include Eat-Rite, also known as “Eat-Your-Paycheck,” because the prices there are outrageous. Yes, I would rather shop with local ownership; but, I have what economists call indifference curve. That means that I have some point between price and local ownership at which price outweighs local loyalty.

The best thing that could happen to Amarillo’s grocery market at this point would be if San Antonio-based HEB showed up. The old Toot N Totum site across Interstate 40 directly south of the old Albertsons store, now occupied by a furniture store, might be too small for an HEB; but, it would be a good start in Amarillo.

I look forward to following this situation, but that would be frequency and overwhelming nature of the former newspaper now owned by Georgia-based right-wingers.