Shomer Shekalim

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eye level

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Every week, as I put away groceries, I undoubtedly find something in the fridge that I was supposed to have eaten over the past week.  Maybe it was leftovers, or maybe some fruit, but now it is a complete waste.  And it’s not that I went out of my way to avoid eating it; if I would have remembered it, I would have eaten it.  But somehow, no matter how many reminders I make for myself, I never remember and somehow I throw something out every week.  But then, as I was going foodshopping, the solution suddenly hit me.

If you’ve ever paid attention when you go food shopping, you know the power of eye level.  Supermarkets go out of their way to place whatever it is they want you to buy at eye level, while moving some of the bargains to a more difficult to reach location (usually all the way on the bottom.)  The logic is simple and proven: people are more likely to buy what is placed in front of them. 

Take the following example from my local supermarket’s cereal aisle:


Notice that not only are the expensive cereals for adults placed at adult eye level, but the more expensive cereals for children are placed at children’s eye level.  All the way at the bottom are value size cereals, the kind that bargain hunters search out, but the average Joe passes by.

As I got home, I began rearranging my fridge.  I put perishable fruits on the top shelf and put the junk food in the fruit drawers on the bottom.  Leftovers are no longer allowed to leave the front and center spot when I open the fridge.  Now my fruit gets eaten, my bal tashchis is reduced, and my overall food bill drops a bit.  And don’t worry about my junk food in the bottom draw; junk food never goes to waste.

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