"Bulk Barn" in U.S.? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-19-2010, 08:15 PM   #1
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Hi all - I'm planning my 3 month trip across the U.S., and likely can't take everything I'll need
Can anyone tell me if there is a 'bulk food' chain in the U.S., where I can purchase small amounts of rice, beans, other dry foods for example? Haven't found anything through Google.
Here in Canada we have a great franchise "Bulk Barn", where I can buy 3 oz or 3# of rice; I'd appreciate info about any similar stores in U.S. Don't want to have to buy family sized packages of anything.
Will be in Michigan, Minnesota, then to Albuquerque and back to Ottawa, so will be in many states.
Thanks for info.
KarenH
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Old 07-19-2010, 09:58 PM   #2
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The "Bulk Barn" is great. I go to one every time I am in St John, NB. Bulk foods are hit or miss here in the States. Whole Foods or Trader Vic's may be a source. Unfortunately, we have neither in my little corner of the world.
Have a good trip.
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Old 07-20-2010, 12:09 AM   #3
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Quote:
Hi all - I'm planning my 3 month trip across the U.S., and likely can't take everything I'll need
Can anyone tell me if there is a 'bulk food' chain in the U.S., where I can purchase small amounts of rice, beans, other dry foods for example? Haven't found anything through Google.
Here in Canada we have a great franchise "Bulk Barn", where I can buy 3 oz or 3# of rice; I'd appreciate info about any similar stores in U.S. Don't want to have to buy family sized packages of anything.
Will be in Michigan, Minnesota, then to Albuquerque and back to Ottawa, so will be in many states.
Thanks for info.
KarenH
Karen,
Speaking for the Pacific Northwest area, most of of grocery stores have a bulk section in them so you can buy any amount you desire.
Deb
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Old 07-20-2010, 04:11 AM   #4
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Check prices. most of the times the container items are cheeper and cleaner. Just try the 10+ pound bags. Some stores have cheeper items than others. Volume usually is cheeper but not always.

Ask around.

However, unless you are going to that area the trip cost is not worth it.
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Old 07-20-2010, 12:31 PM   #5
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Karen, just make sure everything you try to bring into the U.S. from Canada is on the "approved" list. Border crossings can be tedious if the border agents don't know what you have.... they kinda like original packaging that hasn't been opened. You don't want to spend money to find your food stuffs are confiscated because the agent doesn't know what it is. That sorta defeats the purpose when trying to save money.
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:07 PM   #6
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I haven't seen any stores like Bulk Barn here in Florida nor in Minnesota. Our local Whole Foods stores are fairly expensive, because the products are mostly organic or natural. (But, they're the only place I can find dried whole green peas, or buy a little bit of a rarely used spice...). To buy small amounts of food in packages at a reasonable price, I'd suggest shopping the lower shelves at regular supermarkets (lower priced items and store brands are almost always positioned on the lower shelves), shop the sales, and check out Aldi's and Save a Lot, both of which sell normal sized packages, at or below membership club pricing. You pack your own, in your own bags, and at least at Aldi's, pay with cash or debit card only. Both have mostly their own housebrands, which are generally a good quality at Aldi's. Neither are huge supermarkets, stocking the most frequently purchased items at lower prices.

In the summer months, many small cities and towns in the midwest host farmers' markets at least one morning a week--a great way to purchase and enjoy locally raised fresh foods. Here in Florida, we have an abundance of fresh produce stands scattered around our county. Just ask your campground host--she'll know the best places to shop.

I'd agree with Donna. You're probably setting yourself up for unnecessary hassle and time trying to bring a lot of unmarked, unlabeled foodstuffs across the border. Even though we ate or gave away all of our fresh fruits, veggies and meat before crossing into Minnesota, we were searched anyway. (Though very briefly, as the refrigerator and cupboards were quite empty.)
Sherry
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Old 07-20-2010, 07:51 PM   #7
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Hi - thanks to everyone for your thoughts. I just hate carrying tons of food - buying a full-size box of Bisquick, for one or two uses just doesn't make sense. Ah well.
Bye for now.
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Old 07-20-2010, 10:07 PM   #8
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There is some small meals cookbooks from scratch. Not much need for Bisquick when a pound of flour and some baking poweder/soda and spices will do. It found it supprising what I could do with a bucket full of stuff.

Fun to and it gets really interesting what you create from what you think.
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:55 PM   #9
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Welcome to Sprouts Farmers Market is the website for Sprouts farmer market locations. Not in all states, but I believe they are in at least a couple you are traveling through.

-joe
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Old 04-08-2011, 02:43 PM   #10
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We are in Ohio and have a Mr. Bulky foods. I don't know if it is a chain. Stores near Amish communities have bulk food.
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Old 04-09-2011, 05:49 AM   #11
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HI,
Also try searching for natural food stores. The ones I know of all sell bulk items by the pound.
Marjie
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Old 04-09-2011, 10:19 AM   #12
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coop's

In the st paul and minneapolis minnesota area they have little coop markets. The one by my home in st. Paul has two double aisles about 30 ft. Long with beans rice nuts cereal granola coffee tea all the basics . You can buy as much or as little as you like . Bags with ties cost you 3 cents u.s.
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Old 04-11-2011, 09:27 AM   #13
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In the northwest we have Winco stores that have the bins you can buy out of.

Bulk Foods - WinCo Foods
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Old 04-25-2011, 12:01 AM   #14
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Food on the road in smaller amounts is not as difficult as one might imagine. Pancake mix can be purchased in small quantities, one is even is jug where you add water, shake and cook.
Any dry goods that's in a box needs to be broken down to meal size and put into zip log type bags. When we needed to replenish our supplies there was a lot of packaging waste that went into the recycling bin, if there was one, garbage dumpster otherwise.
My advice is look very carefully at all the goods on the grocery store shelves, thinking one ore two meals. Sometimes a "xxx helper" can make a great meal with a small can of meat or tuna. Some of the oriental foods are great for traveling.

Just some thoughts.
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