Saturday, August 02, 2008

If only they had money, they could be rich like us!

Anastasia mentioned dairy price increases in a recent post and it reminded me of a bizarre conversation I had with the out-of-touch in-laws (TOOTILs).

TOOTILs "look after" a single mother from their church. By "look after", I mean they give her a little money towards her rent, and in exchange they get to berate her about her life choices.

So TOOTILs were telling me about the huge recent price hikes in butter, cheese and milk in NZ. "Of course," they said, "it doesn't affect us." (They don't use dairy; only soy products, olive oil, and goat's cheese.) "It's people like [single mother] it's hitting hard. Her children go through litres and litres of milk a day. And cheese! My goodness."
Then, in an exasperated tone, "We've told her. But these people have fixed ideas, you know?"

Quick reality check:

500 grams butter: $3.59 — 500 g olive oil-based spread: $10.39
1 kg cheese: $9.99 — 1 kg goat's feta: $37.35
1 litre cow's milk: $1.99 — 1 litre soy milk: $3.25

(Prices from the NZ Woolworths website)

Warning: total detour from the main point here:

When looking to see what had happened to dairy prices in NZ, I came across this article, which claims that "diary income is driving the [New Zealand] economy." I was quite overcome with a vision of our entire population making it big in the blogging world, and had to go lie down to recover.


Jana said...

I hadn't realised that your in-laws were so religious as to attend church regularly. Doesn't Geekman mind? How does he feel about this? (Enraged? Ashamed? Taciturn?)

Maude Lebowski said...

okay, this is completely unrelated, but you mentioned goat cheese and that made me think of sheep, and since you're in NZ, i've been wanting to ask if you've seen the movie _black sheep_--you know, since it's about man-eating genetically modified sheep roaming the NZ countryside. again, totally unrelated to your post.

also unrelated, --congrats on finishing dr. styleygeek!

Anonymous said...

ok, this is also off topic, but what is this olive oil based butter spread and where can i get me some?! i am lactose intolerant.

StyleyGeek said...

Jana - they really are. His father is even on vestry. Geekman deals with it by questioning them aggressively about their beliefs when he's had enough to drink.

Maude - no, I haven't seen it. I've heard of it, though.

JustMe - it's very common, at least here. One of the most common brands is Bertolli, also Olive Grove, but you can also get it in the Flora brand (flora proactiv spread - olive), and even in the homebrands of some supermarkets.

Some of them contain more olive oil than others, of course.

Grace Dalley said...

I use either Olivio or Olivani spreads, but reading the label is kind of drpressing in that the olive oil component is less than 20%! The rest is other plant oils, water, and assorted additives, including a few milk solids.

Butter used to be much cheaper (about $2 for homebrand) and that has almost doubled (last time I bought butter the cheapest was $4 for 500g!)
The olive oil spreads which used to be seen as a luxury product are now often cheaper than $4 for 500g - I commonly get them on special for $3 or $3.50.
Homebrand pure olive oil is not that expensive, so one can do the Mediterranean thing and get crusty bread to dip in it. Doesn't work with Molenberg, though ;-)

Grace Dalley said...

BTW I think when you give someone a gift, part of the gift is actually taking your hand off it, and trusting that the recipient will put it to good use, whatever that use might be.
Gifts which entitle the giver to be inquisitive, rude and obnoxious are not really gifts! They are disempowering instead of enabling.

ScienceGirl said...

Your in-laws sound like my in-laws: out of touch and holier than thou. Sigh.

Anonymous said...

styley, you have made my day with this info, woohoo!! i am off to find olive oil butter spreads.

Psych Post Doc said...

TOOTILs is the funniest acronyms I have heard in a LONG time! love it.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, "THOSE PEOPLE" really green my tea. I'm so sure "THEY" drink non-soy milk! WTF?!? Neanderthals.