There are no bargains in the food industry. There are no economies of scale in food production above and beyond the farm paradigm that don't reduce quality. There are no shortcuts to distribution or sell-by dates that don't degrade food quality.
• Food quality is a slow benefit or slow poison, depending on every item you consume. Taste can be incidental to this.
• Every price tag contains all the information you need to judge the quality of food.
• There are no genius supermarkets providing special service to their billions of food sales.
• There are low end supermarkets providing inferior quality at a higher price (for what it is) to scrape extra profit from shoppers choosing by price alone.
• The choice in every food purchase is how much to care about quality of food versus cost of food.
• Aldi / Tesco is cheaper than M&S / Whole Foods. Aldi makes more profit per item than Whole Foods. This is significant.
• Food sold in Aldi / Tesco is lower quality than M&S / Whole Foods, mostly in ways not shown on any label.
• Tesco is cheaper than M&S for most products with the same name but not all products are the same. Tesco is NOT better value than M&S.
You get what you pay for. Always.
UNITED KINGDOM - MODERN CLASS BREAKDOWN
(see below references for data sources. Figures referring to UK pounds and population demographic percentages as of January 2019.)
6% 'elite class' BOUTIQUE/HIGHCHAIN
- London with some SE England
- average savings of over £140,000 or income over £89,000
- good social contacts, 4% ethnic, 57yo average
- high culture tastes, cosmopolitan, worldly
- majority graduates with education at the most prestigious universities
- homeowner (over £325000 value), often multiple homes
25% 'established middle class' HIGHCHAIN
- middle England provincial towns and rural
- good social contacts, 13% ethnic, 46yo average
- strong financial position, income over £47000, savings over £26000
- homeowner (over £177000 home value)
- 43% graduates
- pop culture, social media, sports, some high culture
6% 'technical middle class' MIDCHAIN
- London suburban / commuter towns
- average post-tax income £37000, savings £66000
- limited social, often isolated non-voting, 52yo average
- good financials, homeowner (£163000)
- 26% graduates, often science universities (old poly)
- pop culture or no culture
15% 'new affluent workers' MIDCHAIN
- old manufacturing centres outside London/SE England
- decent financial situation £29000, savings £5000
- 11% graduates, new universities
- homeowner (£129000)
- good social links, lifelong circles, 11% ethnic, 44yo average
- pop culture, sport, social media
19% 'emergent service worker' LOWCHAIN/MIDCHAIN
- large cities and university towns
- insecure financials, post-tax £21000, savings £1000, renting
- young, poor, but socially well-linked within worker classes, 34yo average
- pop culture, social media and sports only, no high culture
- 19% graduates, vocational training or polytechnic arts
14% 'traditional working class' LOWCHAIN/ECOCHAIN
- outside London/SE England
- low-end financials, post-tax income £13000, savings £9000
- homeowners generally (£127000)
- local social contacts from the traditional working class, 66yo average
- 11% graduates, part-time or homestudy
- limited culture, some social media, pop culture, disconnected
- fading from contemporary importance
15% 'precariat class' ECOCHAIN
- old industrial towns outside SE England
- earning £8,000, average savings of £800, renting
- middling social contacts, usually by ethnic enclave, 13% ethnics, 50yo average
- 3% graduates, disconnected from schooling
- limited or superficial pop culture, sports, social media, no high culture
BOUTIQUE: local with highest quality home and international produce e.g. Hampstead Butcher, Artichoke, Wyndham House, Parson's Nose, Daylesford, Hunters of Helmsley.
HIGHCHAIN: M&S WAITROSE WHOLE FOODS
MIDCHAIN: SAINSBURY TESCO ALDI
LOWCHAIN: LIDL TESCO MORRISONS ASDA CO-OP
ECOCHAIN: ICELAND TESCO SPA
SAGE Publications. "Largest class survey reveals polarized UK society and the rise of new groups." ScienceDaily. sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130403104218.htm (accessed April 22, 2020)
M. Savage, F. Devine, N. Cunningham, M. Taylor, Y. Li, J. Hjellbrekke, B. Le Roux, S. Friedman, A. Miles. A New Model of Social Class: Findings from the BBC's Great British Class Survey Experiment. Sociology, 2013; DOI: 10.1177/0038038513481128