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Jul 5, 2012 10:28 AM

Best produce prices

Hi- I've recently started juicing and cooking with a lot of produce...and as someone who hasn't grocery shopped in a while (serial dining outer) I'm really surprised at the produce prices!! (I felt like my grandmother at a gas station when I was shopping this morning!)

Any thoughts on the best produce prices? Preferably around North Quincy/ East Milton/ Dorchester area??

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  1. Russo's. Walked out of there with three bulging bags of produce for $35 this morning, and it would have been considerably less if it weren't for the $8 of bing cherries at $2.99 a pound and the two dozen Chip-In Farm eggs at $2.89 a dozen.

      1. The only issues re Russo's and MB -- the two places already mentioned -- is that they'd both be hikes from the Quincy/Milton/Dorchester area (I'm taking it you're looking for someplace local?)

        Price-wise and decent quality, IMO, goes to Hannaford. Their produce IMO is the best bang for your buck out of all the supermarket chains in the area.

        If it were quality first and price second, I'd pick the Fruit Center over in East Milton Square. Wonderful produce, but you pay the price for it.

        1 Reply
        1. re: xo_kizzy_xo

          Agreed. I don't find one place to be my best bet for produce shopping. If you need some basic items, you can also try the Asian markets of Thuan Dat, Kam Man (both in Quincy) for usually competitive prices pretty regularly. The added bonus is that they have the Asian veggies and fruits. If C-Mart ever opens their announced store near Wollaston, it will be interesting to see if they bring their bargain prices to the new location.

          I often find myself leaning towards Hannaford or the Stop & Shop myself for sales on produce. For items that I really want quality on, I tend to hit the local farmers markets (Quincy has a decent one on Fridays in the summer) or the Fruit Center in East Milton Square, but as noted, these are not always the cheapest options.

          I don't go to Roche Bros (by Walmart in Quincy) a lot since S&S and Hannafords are a lot closer, but I find them to be a good option for many grocery items.

        2. Thanks, everyone. My post came from a my experience at Hannafords yesterday. I found the prices pretty high but what so annoyed when I got home and saw that some of my produce had a "use by" date on it of today!! Granted, 100% my fault for buying it and not paying attention to that but annoying all the same. I used to live in Chestnut Hill and Russo's was a stop at least once a week...HUGE fan. I'm going to give the asian markets a try as well as the farmer's markets. I agree with the Fruit Center votes...that place is fantastic---I just wish it had Russo prices!

          1 Reply
          1. re: BellaBoston

            Try Roxie's. They generally have the lowest produce prices around, although the selection is somewhat limited in scope. However, I do like to make a beet/carrot/ginger juice fairly often, and they always have beets for $.99/lb. They also have tomatoes on the vine for $1.99/lb and on sale often for $.99. They have other fruit and produce very cheap as well. They do have a website you can check the sales.

            Also, as mentioned the Chinese markets in Quincy have very good produce prices. Kam Man and Thuan Dat. Their prices are great.

            As for supermarkets, I don't care for Hannaford's as much as Roche Brothers, which has better quality, although maybe the prices aren't as good. Also, the Stop and Shop in North Quincy on Newport Avenue has a very good produce department (better than the other one on Southern Artery).

          2. Agree with the posts above, but for truly low prices, I would think Haymarket gets a consideration. This is especially good if you are juicing, since appearances there can be less than appealing.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Bob Dobalina

              Haymarket also has some cheapo-discount parking for those who don't want to trudge in by the T. I think a local garage charges something like $1 - but maybe those with cars might be able to chime in for more accurate info.

              Between the unbearable hot weather we were having, and THEN my new 'rolling suitcase turned into a shopping cart' broke (actually, one of the new wheels did), I haven't been there in at least a month... sniffle, sniffle. I've been weighing whether I could handle carrying some veggies home w/me without it today... I really don't think my back can take it, and missing those prices - well, it's killing me.

              In comparison to Haymarket, the prices of the produce at Market Basket are not, IMO, that great.

              1. re: threedogs

                not sure point of haymarket - every store ive been has haymarket-grade about-to-go produce marked down, plus you have option to upgrade to fresher stuff, and it doesnt need to be friday/saturday within a couple hours of noon or require a special trip

                1. re: ix9

                  You can't buy a case of 48-56-72 oranges for $15 at your local store, which you sometimes can score at Haymarket. Condition of what is available at Haymarket varies a lot, but what primarily motivates sale there are things that are not moving and that can include some more expensive items (organic produce, imported specialty fruits) as well as things that will not be salable the following week. Its particularly useful if you are juicing for a crowd or can split items with friends (I used to carpool with some friends, we would buy in bulk and then divide items up. It didn't hurt to chat up some of the older vendors in Italian which an attractive member of our group did.), but sometimes you go there and its just not worth it, particularly in hot weather.

                  I will put a word in for Ethnic green grocers. I can't speak to the South Shore options, but I get well selected produce and good deals from Roberto's in Medford and Rosebud in Malden... as well as on less frequent trips to Arax in Watertown and New Deal Fruit in Revere. While Market Basket is convenient, I can get much more of what I like from one of these grocers (and in some cases even Haymarket) and they all have conditioned storage.

                  1. re: itaunas

                    last weekend i bought QUARTS of organic blackberries for $2 each @ haymarket.

                    while the bait and switch was a fairly common tactic from some vendors back in the day, it has been many years since i have gotten anything substandard there and the prices are drastically lower than supermarkets.

                    when it's hot it's best to go early in the day. some guys keep their stuff chilled, but not everybody does and it just gets wilted.

                    cooler times of year, it can pay to go at end of day saturday when guys just want to unload stuff.