Being in the Air Force, we’re pretty blessed to have some access in our commissaries to foods & drinks from around the world. One of my favorite is Gerolsteiner mineral water. It’s pretty common in Germany. It’s got a slightly more salty taste to it than Perrier. I also practically swear that it helps keep me healthy.
Gerolsteiner has been arriving at the Misawa commissary pretty regularly in 1.0 liter glass bottles every week or so. There seem to be just enough drinkers that there are occassional runs on it, and I’m forced to switch to Perrier (or *gasp/horrors*–tap water!). Recently the commissary has been stocking Gerolsteiner in plastic 1.0 liter bottles. I suppose I got so used to plastic 1.0 liter soda bottles that I didn’t realize the plastic bottles are a lot smaller and lighter than glass.
I’m sure whomever is paying the shipping is now spending much less money getting the stuff over here. You’d think they’d lower the price a little bit, but then why would they do that when we’re used to paying $1.49 a bottle? I think what really bothers me is that Gerolsteiner is a GmbH, not an AG; it’s not a publicly traded company, therefore I have no opportunity to profit from my own tastes.
American taxpayers pay for the oversea shipping costs which are not included in the price that you pay at the commissary. Taxpayers also subsidize other costs so that your estimated savings is 30% over the price you would have to pay if you purchased from a commercial supermarket which is driven by profit making.
So you’re saying that American taxpayers are paying less shipping costs. That’s not bad. Still, I used to pay $1.00 or less (depending on the exchange rate) for Gerolsteiner or an equivalently tasty mineral water when I was in Germany. I’m happy that I get German water at all. We could only buy Perrier over in Korea.