In last week’s Sunday paper, there was a coupon and a rebate for Sargento’s new Salad Finishers, which made them better than free. This is a new-ish line of products which are marketed to dress up a salad or a potato…it’s basically several small pouches of salad or potato toppings, like cheese, croutons, bacon, dried fruit, and so on.
Always up for something free, I bought a package last week. Here it is…it’s about the size of an 8-ounce bag of shredded cheese.
And here’s what’s inside.
Are you underwhelmed? Me too. The package contains 1.2 ounces of bacon, 2 ounces of croutons, and 2 ounces of cheese. That’s it. At my grocery store, this cost $3.29, but I’ve seen these for as much as $4-$5. Even at the $3.29 price, that’s still a ridiculously small amount of food for the price.
I can get an entire pound of bacon on sale for $1.99, 8 ounces of cheese for $2 or less, and a bag of croutons is routinely available for $.99(and if I make them myself from leftover bread, they’re practically free). So, for $5 or less, I could have a pound of bacon, half a pound of cheese, and a large bag of croutons, or I could pay $3.29 and get 5.2 ounces of food. That’s not a very difficult choice for me.
Of course, this isn’t marketed as a money-saving option…it’s a convenience option. Honestly, though, croutons are no more convenient this way than they are when they are packaged in an normal bag. And the larger bags of pre-shredded cheese are just as easy to open as the little one was. Of course, pre-cooked bacon is significantly easier to deal with than the uncooked stuff, but if you really didn’t want to mess with frying bacon, you could just buy a jar of real bacon bits and be done with it(the bacon wasn’t any more tasty than Bacon Bits, sadly).
Another thing that bothered me about this was the excessive amount of packaging. A pound of tiny cheese packs requires a lot more plastic than a one-pound package does, and the same goes for the bacon and croutons. Plus, there’s another plastic bag that contains all the little plastic bags.
We did eat all 5.2 ounces(!) of salad toppings, of course, but I’m glad that I didn’t pay anything for them, and I don’t think I’ll be buying another package in the future.