New book about high cost of a bargain, “Cheap,” lauds Wegmans

And what about those Swedish meatballs?: This provocatively titled review (“Why Ikea is as bad as Wal-Mart”) of Ellen Ruppel Shell’s new book, “Cheap: The High Cost of Discount Culture,” isn’t really about food, although one could argue that cheap food is the most obvious symptom of a toxic cycle of consumption. “Cheap” covers our relationship to cheap goods, and the companies (and in the case of China, whole countries) that eagerly produce them for us, and shows how our pursuit of a bargain “threatens the very nature of meaningful work, work we can take pride in and build a career on — or even at which we can just make a living.” While Shell doesn’t offer many solutions, according to the review, she does cite one example of a company that treats its empoloyees and the community as if they have value: the East Coast supermarket chain Wegmans, which offers job-training programs, health insurance, and retirement benefits to employees, and has long bought much of its produce from small, local farmers. (Salon)

One Responseto “New book about high cost of a bargain, “Cheap,” lauds Wegmans”

  1. Hank says:

    New Seasons Markets in Portland, Oregon are similar.  Slightly higher prices but local supply chains, high quality, and happy employees.