Monday, July 21, 2008

Simon Says No Mas

SimonDelivers has finally succumbed to high fuel prices in a tough industry. According to their website, SimonDelivers is now officially out of business and no longer taking orders.

The grocery business has always been about small margins. SimonDelivers' great convenience was not great enough to compensate for their higher prices. If their delivery fee (most recently $9.95) was their only premium, they might still be in business. They did not need prime real estate or a fancy store.

For my family, I am the primary grocery buyer and I do not drive. Initially, Simon seemed ideal. But like most shoppers, I choose bananas by how ripe they look, cantaloupes by how they feel and smell, and beef by the marbling. That has always been crucial to my cooking experience. I was never comfortable ordering meat or apples that I couldn't scrutinize directly. We did continue to use Simon, but only occasionally and then stocked up to alleviate the weight of groceries I carried home from other stores. We'd buy cat sand, laundry detergent, milk, canned goods. For that convenience, Simon will be missed.

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