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Grocery prices in Canada: Woman shocked at bill after leaving Sobeys — 'Not shopping there again honestly'

More than 300 comments on a Canadian shopper's TikTok video give woman tips on saving on essentials like garbage bags and dog food

Produce is shown at a west-end Toronto Sobeys grocery store, Sunday, June 26, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
Produce is shown at a west-end Toronto Sobeys grocery store, Sunday, June 26, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy

A woman's Tiktok video on her $102 bill at a Sobeys grocery store has people fuming in the comments.

Podcaster Avery Francis took to the social media platform to share a grocery store haul that caught her by surprise.

“I never complain about this stuff, but I just got back from the grocery store and I wanted to share what I got and my receipt,” she says, as she starts taking the products out of her grocery bags to place them on her kitchen counter.

Her haul consisted of a bag of bagels, a carton of eggs, a large box of Glad garbage bags, a container of whipped cream cheese, a large bottle of Advil and dog food.

“Guess how much all this cost,” she asks in the video which has garnered more than 22,000 views. “I was shocked. Maybe it’s just me. A hundred and two dollars. A hundred and two!”

Commenters recommend price matching, going to dollar store

While many in the over 300 comments incorrectly guessed the haul was between $60-$80, others were surprised Francis hadn’t paid more — especially considering two bigger ticket items.

“After you showed the dog food and Advil, I guessed $150 so I was pleasantly surprised,” user @lolaCat wrote.

“The ‘whipped’ cream cheese makes me irrationally angry ... Adding air and charging more is the [worst],” @sunflowerfarmer added.

Other users wondered if Francis had considered shopping for some of the items at discount stores or if she had done more to scope out deals.

“Do you price match? Do you stock up when it is on sale?” user @cat.lover665 asked.

Francis admitted that she didn’t but that she would start.

“Dollar store for all the home stuff like garbage bags,” user @MandyA74 wrote. “Absolute game changer.”

“Sobey’s is so expensive, Advil would be cheaper at Walmart ... Canadian Tire for dog food and garbage bags,” user @Furbaby wrote.

"I’m not shopping there again honestly," Francis replied to the comment.

"[First] mistake was going to Sobeys," user @marrajess joked.

Shoppers are seen at a west-end Toronto Sobeys grocery store, Sunday, June 26, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
Shoppers are seen at a west-end Toronto Sobeys grocery store, Sunday, June 26, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy

Canadians venting inflation frustrations on Reddit, social media

Francis’ TikTok grocery haul video from March 16 is just the latest example of how shoppers are reacting to the steep and steady incline of grocery store prices in Canada.

The Reddit forum Loblaws Is Out Of Control, which is meant for Canadians to vent about grocery prices and the changing culture of it, has gained 43,000 members since launching last November. It’s become a popular place for people to share exorbitant pricing — like a $27 bag of apricots or a $16 watermelon — and examples of shrinkflation, like the diminishing size of Kraft salad dressings and boxes of mac and cheese.

The forum is also helping plan a Canada-wide boycott of Loblaws and its affiliated stores, including Shoppers Drug Mart, No Frills and Real Canadian Superstore, for the month of May. While similar complaints are often lodged against Sobeys on the Reddit page, those stores are not a target of the upcoming May boycott.