Friday, December 31, 2010

3 Environmentalist Thoughts

#1 ------Today as I was driving my daughter, her husband and our grand-daughter to the airport we talked about some environmental stuff.  When we picked them up at the airport their car seat had been wrapped in a big plastic bag.  My son in law's comment was they would just get a new wrapper.   (After all as he said, we never let our environmental principles get in the way of our lifestyle.)  Partially as a joke but also as a lesson, I brought the once used bag into their airline.  The first agent was about to throw the thing away but then a second agent picked it up and used it.  Thus, preserving the environment in a tiny way.

#2 ------ The Sacramento Airport authority in the last year or so changed their parking fees.  It once was that if you parked your car  and were there for less than 30 minutes you paid no fee.  The benefit of such a policy was to encourage people not to hover outside the terminals.  That reduced air pollution but it also made the terminals a lot safer.   But then they changed the policy so that now when you drop off people you pay $2 for the first 30 minutes of parking.   Don't get me started on city and county parking lots and their pricing structures.   But it seems to be a silly policy to raise money for the city and the county.

#3 ----- My daughter and I had a discussion about foods - she likes to buy organic produce.  She also talked about her like for Whole Foods.  I am impressed with Whole Foods, even though I remain skeptical about organic foods.   But I speculated that the gross profits for Whole Foods are higher than for other grocery chains (and indeed they are based on margins about a quarter higher than Safeway and almost twelve points better than Kroger).   My daughter thought even with those higher margins she liked shopping there.  I have no problem with John Mackey's marketing strategy  - he discovered a demand that was unfilled and built a series of virtuous circles between growers and buyers to produce something which costs the consumer a little more and earns him a higher margin of profit.   My daughter understood that and was willing to pay for something that did what it said it did.

No comments: