Are grocery stores catering to

households of one or two?

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Activist Carol Ann Johnson of Columbus, Ohio does more than gripe to friends about what she views as slim pickings for single shoppers. She picks up the phone, calls chain stores like Kroger and reminds them how many people are "householders living alone." (According to the 2000 census, 26% of Americans live alone — up from 17% in 1990.)

Johnson wants more for the single shopper; she'd even like to see entire grocery stores geared toward singles' needs and desires, e.g. single portions. Dining at home should be an opportunity for healthier eating, but when fresh produce, dairy and the like is packaged in an amount that guarantees waste, singles tend not to buy it. Instead they may head to the frozen aisle for individual meals that can be loaded with sodium and other additives.

Looking for restaurants featuring counter/bar dining? Click: eating at the bar
Interested in restaurants featuring communal table dining? Click: eating with others

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(Sooner or later, EVERYONE — business and pleasure travelers, singles, those divorced or widowed, very-marrieds whose spouses are on the road, harried moms and dads, etc. — faces the challenge of eating out alone.)

The Art and Satisfaction of Dining Alone — REVEALED!

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For details, please visit: solo dining tips & strategies

Grocery shopping for most of us is simply a matter of searching, gathering and finding a place in line.

Not so for Wharton marketing professor Peter S. Fader who tags shopping carts to discover your shopping pattern.

His conclusions are interesting. To see if you agree with them, click: Patterns of Supermarket Shoppers

Have you discovered

Travelers are well aware of this company and for good reason.

They depend on it for travel-sized versions of cereals (Kellog's Raisin Bran Cereal - bowl), jams (Kraft Strawberry Jelly - sealed cup), condiments (Stonewall Kitchen Country Ketchup), nuts (Corn Nuts - Nacho Cheese) snacks (Mary's Gone Crackers Organic Crackers - Herb), candy (Lifesavers Gummies - Tangy Fruits), breakfast (Diet Source Imitation Pancake Syrup), nutrition & energy bars (Betty Lou's Jumbo Fruit Bar - Cherry), and more. is also a terrific resource for YOU, the home cook! Check out their array of individual-sized gourmet foods (Cheese Spread with Wine - Cabernet Cheddar, Portlock Wild Smoked Salmon, Giovanni's Mushroom Pate - with Marsala wine) — perfect enhancements for a meal at home!

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Cooking Solo

Tidbits from:

"Baffled by Beef: Meatpackers hope to boost sales by educating clueless shoppers" — Columbus Dispatch
"Cooking Solo: Food Industry catching on with recipes geared for one" — Columbus Dispatch
"Table for One: Just because you're cooking solo doesn't mean you have to skimp on fresh food" — The Sacramento Bee
"Big Cookie Makers See Sales Crumble" — USAToday

Noticed the growing numbers of articles on gourmet salt? What's in it for you?

Get the details on an exciting and economical salt sampler. believes the following offer may appeal to solos other than college students!

Gourmet Food Express -Your Italian Grocery Store Online — has developed a "CollegePak" line of selections — specifically for college students (They also offer Quick-N-Easy dorm recipes.) — and promise, ". . . no shopping list and no cooking experience is necessary."

According to the Gourmet Express website:
"CollegePak™ features four individual combinations of products conceived to provide the basics to prepare very affordable, simple, delicious and healthy meals, whether you are a campus resident with access to a dorm kitchen or you live in an off-campus fully furnished apartment."

Carol Ann Johnson shares the following solo shopper finds:

Welch's Dried Fruits are now available in single-serve packages — a convenient way to enjoy a fruit snack. Available choices include:

0.9 oz. pouches for Berry Medley, Tropical Sensation, Mixed Fruit
1.5 oz. pouches for Tropical Sensation, Mixed Fruits

"The Downsizing of Watermelons": In an unusual case of demographics-driven agriculture, an Orange County-based firm is targeting minis to singles and smaller families." — Los Angeles Times — September 25, 2006

Love Mac & Cheese, but not the huge leftovers that remain? Annie's homegrown totally natural has introduced a tasty solution — "Microwavable Single Servings Macaroni and Cheese Meals" ( 5 pouches). Locate a store near you or purchase it online.

Per Annie's website: "Just add water and microwave the certified durum semolina pasta and you'll get a healthy meal fit for one!"

"Meal assemblies," or "professional chef substitutes," is drawing the attention of busy solos/singles and families, too. For details, click: meals made easy

Lean Cuisine (1-800-225-1180) or visit on the web at: OR — money-off coupon (per Carol Ann)!

Boston Market (1-800-488-0050)

Smart Ones (formerly Weightwatchers) (800-762-0228) — free entree coupon (per Carol Ann)!

Hormel (800-523-4635) — single-serve microwave beef stew

Dinty Moore (800-523-4635) — single-serve microwave

Banquet (800-257-1191), Healthy Choice (800-323-9980) and Marie Callender (800-595-7010)

Dole Foods — (800-232-8888) — Look for their 8 oz. zip-lock bag items.

Note: When Carol Ann Johnson tries an item, she calls the company.

"They'll ask you for the UPC symbol off the box and they'll often send you a "money-off coupon."

Want a lead on more coupons? Click:

FREE Online Coupons, Deals, Coupon Codes, Discounts, Promo Codes — COUPONS.COM

Recent visit to

Save $1.00 on Welch's
Save $1.50 on Nestle
Save $1.00 on Dannon Light & Fit

More of Carol Ann Johnson's discoveries:

(Johnson noted that (800-297-6076) — — may be able to supply you with the Walgreen Drugs items mentioned above.)

While surfing the internet, Johnson discovered gold at Amy's Kitchen! Specifically, an article entitled, "Cool Ideas in Frozens," by Tichard Turcsik, originally published in Progessive Grocer Magazine.

Here are excerpts:

" 'In' are individually boxed family-size and single-serve microwavable and/or oven-ready entrees featuring braised short ribs, chicken Marsala, grilled white meat chicken with penne in basil cream sauce, angel hair pasta and seafood, vegetable lasagna, and side dishes including twice baked potatoes, sweet potato casserole, and spinach soufflé."

"The Oriental category is really set to take off . . . Kahiki (1-888-436-2500) is introducing Kahiki Kung Pao Chicken with Lo Mein Noodles. Succulent chicken and vegetables paired with our signature Kung Pao sauce and lo mein noodles. Available in single-serve portions for one (10.5 oz.)

Contact information provided by Carol Ann Johnson

Carol Ann Johnson reports that: Edwards Baking Co.; (404) 377-0511 (Atlanta, Georgia) now offers frozen pie singles (P.S. Johnson has tried them; the key lime variety is tasty!).

P.S. Johnson provided us with a toll-free number for Smucker's Jams & Jellies — (888) 550-9555. You can purchase single serving sizes of their products.

Marzetti of Columbus, Ohio is another of Johnson's finds. They offer single-serve pouches of salad dressing (20 selections, eight of which are "light" or "fat free.") to the public via mail order (minimum order — one case per item). For more information, call: (614) 846-2232.

Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing offers single-serve selections — regular and lite versions. Call: (800) 537-2823 for recipes.

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