Folk economics: dumpster diving

What Nicole McClelland retrieved from the dumpster on her very first trip to Trader Joe’s:

  • two bananas
  • one half-gallon of organic 2 percent milk
  • two prepared and packaged Asian-style noodle salads with ginger cilantro lime dressing
  • one red pepper
  • one orange pepper
  • one package prewashed salad
  • one package Asian stir-fry mix
  • one package organic mini chocolate chip cookies
  • one prepared and packaged chef salad
  • one prepared and packaged Greek salad
  • one prepared and packaged chicken Caesar salad
  • one sausage and roasted tomato pizza
  • one package sliced white mushrooms
  • six apricots
  • two bags cocktail tomatoes
  • three carrot and ranch dip snack packs
  • a half a pound of ginger
  • 1.5 pounds petite Yukon gold potatoes
  • 1 pound green olives
  • 1.5 pounds eggs
  • 1.5 pounds Monterey Jack cheese
  • 3 pounds California minneolas
  • 5 pounds clementines
  • 2 pounds rainbow carrots
  • three packages banana chips
  • one package fresh basil
  • 24 roma tomatoes
  • one package fat-free crumbled feta
  • one prepared and packaged fresh mozzarella and focaccia sandwich
  • two mixed flower bouquets
  • one bouquet Gerber daisies
  • one dozen rainbow roses

She also notes, “I feel a little ridiculous shopping at Trader Joe’s when I know that for every four tomatoes I once took out of the dumpster, I left four dozen.”


2 thoughts on “Folk economics: dumpster diving

  1. I am a groundskeeper for a large apartment complex. You could outfit a whole third world village on what gets thrown away every monday morning. We are an incredibly wasteful culture. I have never bought much in computers, stereo equipment, etc, because they are always throwing out perfectly good ones. Our home art studio, and my woodshop have been nicely outfitted. Even the carpet on the floor of the studio was thrown away. Everything but my drawing desk,{Which I built} was found in a dumpster.

  2. I always heard you could get in trouble “dumpster-diving”. Don’t you need permission to rifle through a business’ garbage?

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