It’s no secret that the United States wastes a lot of food. Unfortunately, it’s also not a secret that our nation’s poor are eating the wrong kinds of food (or none at all). One would think that it would be easy enough to solve both of these problems in one fell swoop — but the more you know about food, the more you realize that sustainable sourcing at scale is a tough nut to crack (call it the Chipotle corollary).
Unless, of course, you’re the ex-president of Trader Joe’s. With the mission of providing healthy options at fast food prices, Doug Rauch brings us Daily Table. It’s a grocery store that, at first glance, looks like it should be competing with the likes of other boutique grocers. But, the pricing on their shelves is anything but boutique. Try $1.19 for a dozen eggs, $1.99 for a block of cheddar cheese and 55 cents for a can of tuna. In a recent interview with the Boston Globe, Rauch states:
Our job at Daily Table is to provide healthy meals that are no more expensive than what people are already buying. We’re trying to reach a segment of the population that is hard to reach. It’s the working poor who are out buying food, but who can’t afford the food they should be eating.
The coming-to-a-neighborhood-near-you grocery chain is brand new, only offering one store at the moment, in Boston. Next, their sights are set on New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Detroit.
The ultra-cheap prices are made possible by sourcing foods that are nearing their expiration dates from farmers, supermarkets, manufacturers, and food distributors. Expiration dates that could be held partially responsible for our nation’s food waste, to begin with.
The problems of making healthy food affordable needed one solution, and right now that solution seems to be Daily Table. They may not have asparagus water just yet, but boutique food markets just got some inspirational competition.