Cheap Bananas

I’ve mentioned Mr. Melon, the Korean 24-hour grocery store in my neighborhood, before. Today I went there to buy some scallions to marinate a steak. I got two bunches for a dollar. While I was there, I saw a stack of bananas selling at eight for a dollar, and $2.99 for a box which looked like it had about 40 bananas in it.

Clearly, there’s some kind of evil behind such cheap bananas. You can’t pay that little for fruit that comes so far away without short-changing someone along the line. Of course, Mr. Melon is a secondary market – from what I understand, they buy the fruits and vegetables from bigger places that haven’t moved their inventory fast enough, and need to sell it before it expires. So they dump it off for cheap to savvy buyers like the folks who run Mr. Melon.

We’ve got a system that produces so much surplus that produce is getting scrapped like old cars, and whole business can run on selling the scraps. I don’t know what this means about buying from the junkyard. A small amount of what you pay is helping the big buyers recover loss on their waste, but part of it goes to a group of vendors who take food bound for the garbage and bring it to the neighborhood at affordable prices.

I haven’t reformed my buying habits yet. I bought eight bananas. I still have space in the freezer.

EDIT: This was posted on Friday, October 17th, but is showing up as October 11th. What strange sorcery is this?


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