Saturday, October 04, 2008

Local spice company reports $68M profit

That local spice company would be McCormick, one of the world's spice behemoths, whose profits rose to $68.8M in the last quarter. I kid you not - it's weird to enter a grocery store in London or someone's home in Morelia (England and Mexico, respectively) and see a McCormick-based product on the shelves. This is specifically due to the economy, which has tanked, in case y'all hadn't heard. Because of this, fewer people are eating out. And since more people have realized that there's more to spices than salt, pepper and ketchup (!), apparently McCormick is reaping the spicy, herb-laden benefits!

As for me, I sure as hell am eating out less. Notice the paucity of posts lately? Okay, I've been busy. Really busy (last year of grad school, let's leave it at that). But I also just don't have as much money to eat out anymore. Something else you may have noticed is the number of posts about things I am eating right at home, whether I make them or just bought them in the supermarket. Mind you, I'm not going to stop eating out altogether, but I won't be eating out that much for a while. This is going to continue for some time, I might add.

Though one thing I admit: while I have enough in the way of spices at home, both McCormick and not, I tend to buy most of my spices in "stranger" locations. Try out that Waverly Farmers' Market if you can (my schedule no longer permits it). The Whisky Island Pirate Shop has the most fascinating array of spices I have seen in a while. I've gotten both smoked paprika (from which I just cannot go back) and sumac - which is liberally sprinkled on many Persian dishes - here. The rest of my spice shopping is at the various ethnic groceries - cardamom and asafoetida from the Punjab Market (also in Waverly), just as one example. Too bad McCormick isn't bottling that!

6 comments:

Kitt said...

I have to think the McCormick makes most of its profit from packaging, considering the price difference between a 3-ounce bottle at Safeway and the same 3 ounces in bulk from someplace more interesting. Since most people (in the U.S., anyway) only ever shop at mainstream markets, that's all they ever know about spices.

I'm a big fan of The spice House (based in Milwaukee), but I also like Penzey's and Savory Spice Shop (both have local outlets), and the bulk spice aisle at Wild Oats (now Whole Foods). If you want just a pinch of something to try, you pay only pennies for it.

danielle said...

You're in your last year of grad school? Me, too! Good luck with that. I don't mind your fewer eating out posts. I can't afford to eat out, either. :)

John said...

Dani: Yep, though I won't stop eting out altogether. I just won't eat out as much, not that I have much time to cook anything either. And I am glad that Beltway Snacking thing is over because that was costing me a lot - hot dog here, lasagna there, cake here, kebab there. It all adds up!

Kitt: We do have Whole Foods in Baltimore, and I've seen Spice House spices in California (are they here?). But I must confess that I don't think any of the others are around this part of the country. I'll have to save that for a trip to Colorado.

Pigtown-Design said...

And when you own stock in McC, and go to their shareholders meeting, they give you a huge swag bag with all their newest products. And their annual report is scented.

John said...

PD: Soooo, speaking from personal experience? ;) Maybe it's time to buy stock in McCormick...

tory said...

Penzey's is really the best - I buy stuff from them online. Their website is lame but the magazine is fun. They have some expensive stuff (wonderful blends like Fox Point and Herbes de Provence, and double-strength vanilla . . . ) but you can get good prices on bulk stuff you use a lot like Cinnamon, Cumin, Garlic Salt, etc. Quality is much better than McCormick!