"For each of us there is some mission in life if we but find it. All have some definite thing to do, something for which they have been created; and only the doing of this thing will justify their existence here on earth. If we come into the world and occupy space and time without giving back for this privilege, we have not justified ourselves, and our lives in the end are barren." ~ Hay

Friday, August 12, 2011

Extreme Couponing: Clip, Shop & Die

There is a new show on TLC called Extreme Couponing.  It highlights various individuals clipping grocery store coupons and then shopping for their bargains.  A woman and her young child routinely dumpster dives in a newspaper recycling bin in search of extra savings.  Another young mother, while shopping with her husband and three children, purchased 600 pieces of candy.  She decided she will keep some for her family, the rest she will donate to other children at a local church.  Most of these extreme couponers have stockpiled up their bargains in the basement of their homes and cannot wait to show them off.  While this seems to be a wonderful thing to do because of the savings on grocery store bills, the savings of which can go to other home expenses, it really is not a savings at all.  Actually, their coupon clipping is going to cost them their health.
Unfortunately, most grocery store coupons today are put out by manufacturers whose products contain a host of chemicals.  The young mother who purchased the 600 pieces of candy, did she read the ingredients on the label?  Nope!  She just dumped the entire contents into her cart.  Using coupons will get you artificial ingredients, food dyes, MSG, partially hydrogenated oils, BHA and BHT, high fructose corn syrup and more.  What do you think this will do to your health bills in the future?  How about the health bills of your children?  It is NOT a savings!  To the contrary, you are investing in your own sickness.  In addition, teaching young children to clip and shop for these products sends out the wrong message to your child.

 I must admit it saddened me to watch these young parents show their children how to “shop for the bargain.”  What these parents should be doing is teaching their children how to read labels and shop for quality nutrient dense foods.  This they cannot do because there is no coupon for the carrot, lettuce or broccoli.  How will these children ever grow up into healthy adults?  What these parents should be doing is teaching their children how to pick out the best in season fruits and vegetables at their local farmer’s market.  Instead of stockpiling chemicals in the basement, how about taking those fruits and vegetables purchased at the market and demonstrating for your child how to prepare, freeze and can for future use?  Isn’t this the way it should be? 

What should we do with those coupons in the newspaper?  DON’T USE THEM!!  They are trash!  They are not worth the paper they are printed on.  Please recycle them instead.  Hopefully, the coupon in its next life will go to better use.   I asked MY SON to come along to our local recycling center located in Yaphank, New York where I was graciously given a tour of the recycling facility.  When we recycle our paper goods, it gets picked up by the town and deposited into an area called the “tipping floor.”   From that point it gets picked through for cardboard and other debris then gets placed on conveyer belts where it is further sorted.  Once it finishes its rotation, it gets bailed where it waits to be sold.  Countries such as Canada and China as well as areas in Upstate New York will purchase the bailed paper and then reuse it for some future purpose.  I enjoyed seeing what happens to my recycled paper goods.  “Kudos” to the Town of Brookhaven for doing such a good job.  Also, I wanted to send a personal thank you to Michael Des Gaines, Environmental Facilities Manager at the Department of Waste Management for the Town of Brookhaven for taking time out of his schedule to show me and my son around.  Hopefully, my coupons will have a more productive second life.

Due to the popularity of the television show Extreme Couponing, it has been reported just this week that newspaper theft is on the rise, especially in Arkansas, Idaho, Texas, Alabama, Florida and California.  People are searching for “coupons for chemicals.”  WHAT IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE!! 


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Annie Speck said...

Very good point! I have found for years now that most of the products that coupons are available for, are not products I buy anyway - so its like getting suckered into something just cause its $1.00 off - when you wouldn't have spent the $5.00 for it in the first place??

Anonymous said...

Love this article! Where are the coupons for fresh fruits and vegetables?? Insane! - Nicole

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