Viroqua Food Co+op Blog

Look for the Deals

Posted by Jan Rasikas, General Manager on Mon, Jan 04, 2021 @ 09:30 AM

Look for the Deals

We know that shoppers are always looking for a good deal and we’re here to help you find that deal every time you shop. Our shelves have a complete spectrum of products. Admittedly, some specialty products hit the high end of fanciness! But we work to balance product selections with a range of quality and organic standards at the lowest price possible with plenty of choices in between.


We have a selection of products that we purposefully negotiate for everyday low prices, so we can pass that great price on to you.

BlogImage-2020-basics-4VFC’s Co+op Basi¢s program has over 350 organic products identified on the shelves with a purple basi¢s tag.

BlogImage-2020-basics-2Co+op Deals are great savings on some of our most popular products. In an average two week period there are over 600 items on sale. These are nationally negotiated prices that are better than or rival sales in the big box natural food stores. Often the sale is paired with a manufacturer coupon to make it a really sweet deal!

BlogImage-2020-basics-3Fresh Deals are sales expressly for the fresh departments, found in the perimeter of the Co-op. You’ll find 10 to 15 items every week in Produce, Meat and Seafood, Deli and Cheese on sale that showcase exciting new items as well as everyday favorites.

Pandemic Impact on the Cost of Food
The deals at the Co-op are more important than ever. According to a recent study of the COVID-19 pandemic conducted by the data science firm Dunnhumby:

  • 91% of consumers are now watching grocery store prices closely.
  • 49% of US consumers surveyed reported that their personal finances were rated as poor, an increase of nearly 20% since July.
  • Grocery prices are up 5.6% from June 2019 to June 2020. This is several times the average rate of food price inflation Americans have come to expect in recent decades.
  • August Consumer Price Index for food was 4.1% higher than in August 2019.
  • Supply chain disruptions with unpredictable pandemic shopping patterns have also created shortages and fickle availability of products and packaging that we’ve relied on for many years.

Trends are affecting the price of food, and that in turn affects running a grocery store. When the foodaway-from-home demand sharply reduced, growers and ranchers lost one of their key marketing channels. With less buyers, it is costly or impractical to harvest, preserve or store the same amounts of raw and intermediate food and beverage products.

Food companies needed to pivot quickly to adapt and divert their products from foodservice to retail, adding significant costs and extra regulatory hurdles. Increased turnover, additional training, and decreased immigration during the pandemic are all factors driving up the cost of food.

There’s more. The Midwest is now shifting – from our local produce season to a larger percentage of California organics. Economists predict higher prices due to the past year of significant wildfires and resulting smoke that restricted the harvest and flow of products.

Grocery stores measure such impact with the Producer Price Index (PPI), which is interpreted as supermarket operating costs. The PPI was up 7.9% in April and 6.7% in May as compared to the same months in 2019. These spikes represent the significant costs associated with adapting to COVID-19.

In this extraordinary time, there is a good outcome we can claim – we’re cooking more from scratch! Shoppers are buying more fresh veggies and single-ingredient foods. What a great way to stay healthy. Thank you for wearing a mask and keeping your grocery dollars local. Cooperation really can get us through.

Stay healthy, Co-op friends.

-Jan Rasikas, General Manager



Tags: co-op basics, Co+op Deals, save money, Fresh Deals