The Special Offer

Grocery shopping - one of the first activities one must accomplish upon arrival at one home or another.  We arrived in El Salvador last night.  This morning we went to the Super.

Súper Selectos is a chain grocery store in El Salvador.  Depending on the location, the products and the prices vary a bit, but it's pretty much a one-stop shop for staples, meat, produce, cleaning supplies, household goods, and even underwear.  Savvy shoppers will know which dairy store, which fruit market, which bakery might have things for cheaper prices, but for people without that kind of time or without the inside knowledge of where else to go, the Super is a good choice.

Súper Selectos uses a strategy which is designed to make the shopper feel like he or she is "winning" at shopping.  This highly successful tactic is the Oferta.  

Salvadorans are crazy about special offers.  OK, so admittedly, we are too.  But Salvadorans are famously crazy for the ofertas.  They joke about it all the time.  (Can you believe the Neveria stopped offering 2 for 1 ice cream cones?   Oh wait, that is another story.)

Let's face it:  we are all tempted by the 12-pack of Pilsener beer which has the cool beer mug shrink-wrapped onto the package.  (Did I mention I shop with my husband?)  Shrink-wrap is a staple at the Super.  Want to sell more oatmeal?  Shrink-wrap a plastic cereal bowl with a cow on it to the package.  Want to sell more spaghetti?  Shrink-wrap two packs of spaghetti together with a free can of hot chiles.  (Gosh, that can of hot chiles is still in my cabinet!)

As I was unloading today's purchased ofertas, I decided to snap some pics and write a story.  I should say that we do have a couple of oferta rules:  1) We do not seek out special offers, we let them find us; 2) We do not succumb to offers for things we would not normally purchase (spaghetti is a staple, really); 3) We check prices to make sure oferta especial really is a good offer for the food product; and 4) We check expiration dates.

So, you ask, what special offers found their way into our shopping cart today?

Yes, two boxes shrink-wrapped together for lovely savings.

These are the eggs I like.  I pulled out the box and...

Special bonus:  Free Ketchup!  Who knew?

Needed a few snacks for late afternoon munchies...
Buy 3 and get 4.  Good deal!

In case anyone was curious about the other 2 flavors.
Earlier this year, I was guiding a small delegation and we had to stop at a mall for some reason, and we had extra time.  We decided to to have a Súper Selectos field trip.  The group had fun learning about different foods, comparing prices to US prices, and purchasing treats to take home.  (Súper Selectos actually has a pretty good selection of coffee, chocolate, rosa de jamaica, etc.)  The experience was a springboard for a conversation about global markets and challenges for people who live in poverty (especially in urban settings).

We are very blessed to be able to go to the Super, to chuckle at some of the ofertas and to have some fun while purchasing our food.  Special savings deals and offers are helpful to families, and Súper Selectos publishes daily deals on Facebook and in the papers and offers 10% off fresh produce every Tuesday.  They also place products from small local growers and producers alongside the name brands in an effort to promote the local economy.

The next time you are in El Salvador, you just might want to take a trip to the Super.

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