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Jan 18, 2014 02:11 PM

Market Basket 4% off

saw a big sign in the mb that all year long they are offering a 4% discount on groceries. on top of already cheap prices!

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  1. I've been shopping at MB 25 years. I am thrilled to have this 4% discount on everything but one thing I did notice was the prices have been going up, albeit slowly, for a while now. I do feel that MB for the most part has has the lowest prices around so I'll take it!

    1. Oh, I saw that on their circular and it said that it expired Dec. 27. I thought it was a typo and neglected to note the 2014 date. (tough to get old) That's pretty amazing. Thanks for the heads-up.

      I am really excited that the Waltham MB is apparently going to be under construction again soon.

      I wonder if this promotion has anything to do with trying to offset the negative press from the family feud?

      3 Replies
      1. re: bear

        at first i thought somebody just neglected to take the sign down too, lol.

        prices everywhere have been creeping up and we are in the dead of winter. overall the prices at mb are SOOO much less than s&s or shaw's it kills me to shop elsewhere now. even if today i spent 15 minutes trying to find corn syrup. (with the peanut butter, really? NOT in the baking aisle? no. 10 aisles away. wtf.)

        1. re: hotoynoodle

          One big plus at MB is that someone will walk you to the item is you ask an employee where it is. That has never happened to me at Shaws even since the change.

          At MB Somerville I was helping a woman even shorter than me get something from a shelf and a young MB staffer came over and thanked me and then asked if I had any questions and was I able to find the things on my list.


          1. re: BostonZest

            I have always found the staff at somerville MB very helpful and also the other customers, who more than once have helped me get something from a shelf I couldn't reach. I've never experienced that at other markets. Glad you helped, Penny!

            I've had some great short conversations at MB with complete strangers about the CULANTRO for example, and how it is different from cilantro. sorry for the all caps but the auto correct won't let me type it in lower case without changing it to cilantro. Despite the crowds and the hassle, I love the place.

            I'm not excited by the marketing ploy but it's still a better and cheaper supermarket than elsewhere. and always has the fresh herbs....and recently, the tuscan black kale (auto correct won't let me type LACINTO, turns it into lacing.)

      2. It seems to me that this is just marketing. Prices on some items that I buy definitely have gone up. So, raise the prices and then tell people you are giving them a 4% discount might be a wash for the customer or even a way to sugarcoat a net higher grocery bill. Bottom line, to me this is a gimmick - something I have not previously seen at MB. Most unwelcome. I would far prefer they mark the items with the prices we will end up paying for them.

        All in all, I will still do most of my shopping at MB, but I love them a bit less and will be looking forward to the Wegman's that will be up the road from the Burlington MB just a bit more.

        10 Replies
        1. re: PinchOfSalt

          are you able to discern increase in commodity prices vs. some sort of internal, mb only raise? i have found some higher produce prices, but as i said above it's january and it's new england. i am not buying turnips from jebediah's root cellar.

          1. re: hotoynoodle

            They've raised the prices on non-produce items. For example, in the recent past their chicken leg quarters (great fodder for chicken soup) used to be $.89/lb every day (not on sale). Now they are $.99 on sale and (if my memory serves) $1.09 as the everyday price.

            1. re: PinchOfSalt

              i realize part of this promotion is marketing, but because of several years worth of biblical type floods, freak blizzards and droughts, commodity prices are soaring, so i don't begrudge small price hikes.

              if i hadn't gone to the store, i don't know that i would have known about this deal, so they're not exactly blanketing the press with it, but rather primarily communicating to existing shoppers.

              1. re: hotoynoodle

                Look at it this way. Most supermarkets operate at margins that are LESS than 4%. (See So, a 4 percent discount on almost everything could wipe out all of the profit that MB makes unless it also raised its prices to make up for it.

                More about how this marketing gimmick works. On December 27, a weekly grocery bill goes up 4%, but by then people will have been trained by MB to believe that that is just the end of a great discount program, not a price hike.

                1. re: hotoynoodle

                  I agree. It's not like prices are going down. MB has never been dishonest about price increases and never tried to "hide" them so I don't see this as a ploy to "hide price increases". I've shopped here for years and have noticed price increases on many of the things I buy regularly. It's not like things are getting cheaper.
                  The bottom line is MB regular prices continue to be lower than those of their competitors. Their service continues to be great. If they want to give me 4% off for the rest of the year then I will gladly take it. When it ends..I will take it in stride. I expect whether they offer the discount or not..prices are still going to be up a year from now.

            2. re: PinchOfSalt

              I agree. This is nothing but marketing. They could just lower sticker prices, but they do this to make you think you are getting a better deal. I have no idea what their costs are or if they are just pushing this 4% into the sticker price meaning there are no real savings, but I'm not going to get excited over such an obvious marketing ploy.


              1. re: hungrytommy

                Agreed. It's like all the hoopla around the annual tax-free weekend declared each August. Would you REALLY spend forever hunting down a parking space and elbowing your way into the mall if the ads said they were offering 6% off? Because that's all the tax holiday amounts to.

                1. re: greygarious

                  i don't bother with tax-free weekend, but those who stampede on black friday might feel otherwise.

                  1. re: hotoynoodle

                    BF has really good deals. If things are on sale for 25+% off, it's worth some bruises, especially on expensive items. MB is cheaper, for the most part, than other area chains, even before the 4% discount, so I don't think it's going to change peoples' buying habits there. On the other hand, if other chains up the ante by offering larger discounts than MB, it could make them competititve and thereby cut into MB's profit margin.

              2. re: PinchOfSalt

                I am hoping that when Wegman's opens I will be able to get to it. The Msx Tpk is a parking-lot already!

              3. Yes I the ad too. I spent about $84.00 the other day there and got $ 3.54 "off" that. But things have gone up.
                My wife likes their cranberry juice bottles. The were 2 for $3.00 for months now its $ 2.15 each. Same with other items we buy. But we still go there and I got a Stop&Shop right down the street and only go there if I have to.

                2 Replies
                1. re: steve4310

                  I don't shop there often but I was aware of the "deal". Just reading some of the recent cost increases (not claiming they are MB's doing) the prices are going up more than 4%. If this is more than just anecdotal evidence, then the discount is meaningless.

                  I'm not a huge fan of MB. I do like their lemon donut. But I'm also not a fan of Trader Joe's so obviously I have horrible taste in grocery stores.


                  1. re: hungrytommy

                    meh, i have given up on trader joe's, but now that i live in shangrilowell, mb is my local option and the closest s&s is dramatically higher-priced on nearly everything -- even before the 4% promo.

                2. It is what it is. I already shop at MB because it is cheaper than my other options, and I will continue to shop there after this promo is over.