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By Francis Koster
I have powerful memories of my mom, the mother of six, counting money at the kitchen table, sighing and scratching items from her shopping list because she realized we could not afford them.
Sometimes she cried.
While shopping, she taught me how to look out for overpriced items. If her suspicions were aroused, she would do something like take a 5 pound bag of potatoes over to the meat department and ask them to weigh it. She was usually correct, and they had to reduce the price. After a series of such events, we switched to another market.
All behavior has consequences.
She would push the baby stroller, and I the shopping cart. I loved eggs at breakfast or hard-boiled in my school lunch, and I would pepper her with questions: “How much less should a dozen small eggs cost compared to a dozen large eggs?” “What does ‘large’ mean, anyway?” “Why are some eggs more expensive than others?”
Bless her soul.
Those questions are as relevant today as they were 70 years ago — but for different reasons. Back then, eggs were produced on family farms. Now they are produced in concentrated animal feeding operations, where tens of thousands …
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