grocery prices canada us

Canadian in Texas shares 'how cheap' grocery shopping has become since moving

A recent trip to the grocery store in Texas was an eye-opening experience for a Canadian woman who relocated to the US earlier this year.

TikToker Samantha Brookes posted a video in March about how her Texas grocery haul was significantly cheaper than what she experienced as a shopper in Canada.

"My frustration is with the cost of living and how much it truly costs in Canada to be able to live, and there's no quality of life," she said in the video, which has received over 400,000 views.

"It's the most frustrating thing I've ever seen in my life, and it just continues to get worse."

She then goes on to say that living in the States — or at least where she's located in Texas — is much more affordable even with the exchange rate, especially when it comes to buying groceries.

Canada vs US grocery comparison

Brookes provides a cost breakdown of some basic items she purchased at H-E-B, a Texas-based supermarket.

We've looked up the same/ similar items at Real Canadian Superstore for a basic price comparison.

Brookes pans to a 1.65 lb package of thin-sliced chicken breast priced at US$6.57 which converts to around C$8.92. That breaks down to US$3.98 (C$ 5.40) per pound.

At Superstore, no thin-sliced option was available online, so we went with a club pack of boneless, skinless chicken breasts on sale for C$22.55 each for about 4.1 lbs of chicken.

This sale chicken is priced at C$5.49 per pound, making the per unit price similar to the converted unit price of the US chicken.

However, the Superstore chicken is regularly priced at C$30.77, meaning the regular per-unit price would be much higher at C$7.50.

At H-E-B, a package of 4.03 lb drumsticks is priced at US$3.99, which works out to C$5.41. The per unit price is US$0.99 (C$1.34) per pound.

At Superstore, a package of 5.47 lb drumsticks costs C$21.87. The per-unit price is C$3.99 per pound, nearly three times the H-E-B price.

A carton of a dozen eggs at H-E-B US$1.89, or around C$2.56. The cheapest carton of eggs at Superstore is C$4.12.

A 2 lb bag of all-purpose flour at H-E-B is US$1.32 or C$1.79. At Superstore, a slightly larger 2.2lb bag of all-purpose flour is C$2.49.

Brookes then shares the prices of a few items she picked up at Trader Joe's.

A 24 oz (709 ml) jar of Marinara sauce is US$1.99 or C$2.70. That works out to about C$0.38/100 ml of sauce. Superstore's cheapest Marinara sauce option is C$3.79 for a 650 ml jar, which is CA$0.58/100ml of sauce.

A package of Trader Joe's gnocchi (454 grams) is US$1.99 or C$2.70 (C$0.59/100g). A 500-gram package of Superstore's PC gnocchi is C$2.79 (C$0.56/ 100g) and works out to be a slightly better deal.

Trader Joe's balsamic glaze is US$2.99 or C$4.06 for a 250 ml bottle. Superstore's PC balsamic glaze of the same size is priced higher at C$4.79.

Overall, the US grocery items in Brookes' haul were cheaper than Canadian prices at Supstore with the exchange rate factored in.

Is the grass greener?

Many folks in the comments shared similar frustrations with the cost of living in Canada.

"$1.99 for tomato sauce????? 😭 I could dream of that price," said one person.

"My jaw dropped at the price of chicken," wrote another.

One person said they lived in a border city in Canada, meaning they shopped frequently in the US for groceries. "A lot of stuff is great… however the meat is not on the same level. Canada has higher standards on meat," they noted.

Other commentators said they had moved or were considering moving to Canada due to affordability issues they were experiencing in the US.

"In January I packed up from Texas to come to Canada again because Texas is just as bad in rent and utilities," said one person.

"I lived in Texas for two years while my husband was working there. I hated it and couldn't wait to move back to Canada," said another.

Another commenter noted that the US is still extremely costly for services like healthcare.

"We were visiting my inlaws… my son got an ear infection. It was $450 just to go to a clinic for antibiotics. Canada is still 'eh okay by me," they stated.

While moving away from Canada is becoming a popular — if not necessary — choice for folks who can no longer afford to live in this country, many who have made the decision to leave have also shared the downside of relocating.

Has the unaffordability crisis got you thinking about leaving Canada? Let us know in the comments.

With files from Amir Ali

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