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RelayFoods OrderAfter over 2 1/2 years, it’s a sad farewell…

I discovered RelayFoods just over 2 1/2 years ago. My first few orders were experimental – I felt a little odd getting my groceries delivered after all – but their amazing quality and service won me over and I’ve been a loyal shopper ever since.

I didn’t pay too much attention when they announced a merger with Door-to-Door Organics. Hey, two cool businesses combining. Smart. Then earlier this week, the email came…

Relay is transferring all their services to Door-to-Door. Umm… OK… I can handle this. It’s cool. It’s just gonna be a little transition and maybe some changes… and…

Except the ripples of impact have already started and they’re not cool. Relay is staying open until January 15 – GREAT! I can get two more orders in. Except I can’t. They’re out of stock for many of my usual items. I tried to put together my shopping list for this week and found about a third of the normal things are no longer available (or are out of stock) and either have no comparable replacements, or the other options are far more expensive.

Harrumph.

Worse, I can’t start shopping at the new Door-to-Door site until January 13. So… for the next two weeks, my choices are: limited selection (requiring that I supplement by shopping elsewhere) and higher prices for the things I do get, or just go elsewhere.

OK. Deep breath. I can handle this. Time for some market research and cost-benefit analysis.

Yep. Spreadsheets happened.

Since D-t-D is not yet available in this area, I used two areas where it is available and averaged the prices…

First off – their selection in both markets is much narrower than I’m used to with Relay. There are several items I could not get, unless things change.

And then there was the price point. I’m not a grocery miser. I’m not pinching pennies on the grocery bill, but I try to avoid Whole-Foods level sticker shock. Relay gave good bang for the buck… but it wasn’t the least expensive option out there.

D-t-D (again, averages of two markets I could find) would increase my grocery bill by 15%. Ummm… That’s a lot. I mean, seriously…

So, for the next couple of weeks, I’m back to traditional grocery shopping. Ugh. Once D-t-D fully opens in this area, I’ll check out their pricing and options (based on how they work in their other markets – it would not work for our family, but hope springs eternal). I’ll also be looking at other delivery options…

Peapod is not an option here – it’s stocked by the local Giant stores, and that’s a no-go. Ditto anything that uses Safeway. Harris Teeter has an online ordering system where you can drive up and pick up, but my experience with that has been mixed at best. And Instacart delivers from Whole Foods (and a few others)…

Groceries are about to get a lot more complicated. Le sigh.