Technology is a wonderful new medium, but our Grandmothers might turn in their graves if they could have ever imagined this possibility. When my Grandmothers were first married, they probably grew almost all of their cooking ingredients, and would have had the others delivered in 20 pound quantities off the back of a horse drawn wagon. (I’m probably a little older than some of you though).

However, it’s unlikely that on line shopping could ever make in store grocery shopping completely obsolete. My sister-in-law mostly does her grocery shopping on line, here’s why:

  • It’s convenient and the delivery fee is cheaper than the cost of the fuel to drive 30 minutes into the nearest town.
  • She finds it budget friendly and time saving.
  • It reduces the need to “over shop” for items that she may already have.
  • She can check the meat specials, plan her weekly menu, and then use her recipe book to ensure she has all the ingredients.
  • When the delivery arrives, she hasn’t had to touch any of the items until she unpacks them.
  • Everything is fresh and carefully selected
  • The order is seldom wrong or miss anything.
  • She’s on first name terms with the delivery driver making this a very easy option for her.

On the other hand, I have the time and live closer to the supermarket. I know most of my recipes “off by heart” so I do my shopping from memory. Admittedly, I often buy things that I already have in the cupboard, but I can always use them. I don’t ever have a trolley half full of toddlers before I even start, having said that my husband sometimes likes to still ride on the trolley when I’m not paying attention.

I think bumping into friends for a chat is the bonus that tips this question in favour of in store shopping for me. It’s a good excuse for a coffee, which supports the local coffee shops and which provide local employment.

For the moment, on-line shopping is a little “too sterile” for me. I like the visual and tactile side of “cruising the aisles”… on the condition that I don’t have a wonky trolley. If I were unable to drive or had limited mobility, “on line” would be my preferred option too. There are lots of reasons why this will work beautifully for some shoppers. However, I’m glad that there are both options available, and I applaud the supermarkets for enabling us to have the choice.

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