I came home from the organic grocers today feeling all good and self-righteous, but now I feel like a sucker. I bought organic white vinegar for the astronomical price of $4.19 a liter. You may be asking yourself one of two questions right now a) You yuppie, don’t you know that white vinegar is dirt cheap at the regular grocery store? or b) What on earth is white vinegar and why does it need to be organic?
For askers a: yes, I knew it was vastly over priced.
For askers b: it is for my next experiment tomorrow, pickled garlic.
So why did I spend three times what it would cost at Safeway for a relatively inconspicuous item? In a word, HYPE! The back of it said that often regular white vinegar is made out of wood chips or *gasp* petroleum products. This white vinegar is made out of only organic corn and potatoes. So I sat in the aisle stunned, trying to decide how much I love my body, because quite frankly petroleum vinegar doesn’t really have a nice ring to it. Finally, I gave in and added it to the basket. I got home and told my wonderful husband about the experience, and he too was aghast, who would have thought that the makers of regular white vinegar would be so shady?
So how did I find out that I was a sucker? Well I was thinking about the very expensive garlic pickles that I’m making tomorrow, and wondering if I could find a cheaper source for organic white vinegar. So I type it into google, and find a discussion about this whole question of organic vs. disgusting vinegar. Lo and behold, the way to avoid this problem is to look at the ingredients and make sure the only thing listed is grain vinegar (which evidently most of them are).
Now, I am all for preserving the planet, but I do not think that a 300% mark up is reasonable or sane. It is just marketing fear, and that really bugs me. Yes, the white vinegar I buy at the neighborhood Safeway will still have a bunch of pesticides in it, and not be made by people who really care about the quality of their workmanship; but on the other hand, it will also not be made by people who make money out of scaring consumers, most of whom would never think to check up on their claims.
P.S. Hubby: Sorry but I threw out the receipt, so no, it is not going back.