New Zealand is in a Recession. Don’t let the C***s tell you Otherwise
Last night I did my grocery shopping for the week, amounting to a total of $75 NZD, which had caught me off guard. I even checked my receipt, just in case the cashier had made a mistake, and maybe scanned one of my items twice.
I almost never buy enough groceries to fill a shopping cart. 99% of the time I just take a basket with me, and that’s usually more than enough.
My most expensive items last night were 1x block of generic, Countdown Cheese ($13.50 NZD) and one packet of Nong Shim Hot and Spicy noodles, a high school favorite ($8.50, and it was on special).
I’d been looking for a packet of liquid gravy treats for my cat, seen as it’s nearly impossible for me to feed her any sort of wet food without mixing it in with an addictive treat. Whiskas biscuits, which have been out of stock for nearly a year now, have thankfully returned to the shelves, at $18 per 2KG that time. Yet the packet of 4 little gravy sachets have gone from a non-special price of $3.50 — to a whooping $4 — which made me reluctant to buy them. May as well just stick to using Salmon pâté and hope that she’s hungry enough to eat it. Failing that, I could just keep feeding her dry food, and call it a day.
Walking past the fresh produce isles didn’t make the matters any better. One head of broccoli is currently sitting at $5 per head; a new record if I’ve ever seen one.
Yes. 5 DOLLARS for a head of broccoli.
You used to be able to buy 3x 1kg bags of rice for that money, yet even rice has gone from $1.80 to a minimum of $2.50.
I’ve been starting a vegetable garden this spring, and already have 36 corn plants, a row of fully-grown spinach, and some tomatoes and peanut plants still germinating in my seed-raising station. (Photos and video blogs coming soon.) I’ve also got a whole supermarket bag of potatoes waiting for me in the garage — ready to cook!
I used to think it would be nearly impossible to save money on vegetables, seen as a single head of broccoli used to cost no more $1.50–$2 on average, and also considering how long it takes to grow one of them (3–4 months).
I actually calculated how much food I’d need to grow in order to provide 2200 calories a day, for a whole year, which may actually be a bit excessive if you’re still buying cheese, eggs, oil and sugar from the supermarket:
- 150 Potato plants
- 80 Peanut plants
- 40–60 corn stalks
- 80 Kidney bean vines
- 24 sunflowers
- 24 tomato plants
- 2x Avocado trees producing at least 100 avocados per year
- 160x straw bags of Oyster mushrooms
- + Leafy greens, Kale, New Zealand spinach, herbs, onion, garlic, etc.
The reasoning behind this layout is the fact that I don’t really own the property I currently live in; my parents do.
If I did, it would be pretty easy just to dig up the lawn, and add 2–3x additional garden beds at 10 meters square each — which I could then use to grow more potatoes, and thus save myself from having to grow crazy amounts of mushrooms, avocados and tomatoes.
Again — it’s worth pointing out that you probably won’t be surviving on garden produce alone. The human body still needs Omega 3’s, Vitamin D and B12 from animal products, or vegan supplements. Chances are — you’ll still be buying oil, rice, sugar, eggs, cheese, and meat (if you eat meat) from the supermarket, which could easily make up 600–1000 of your daily caloric intake, or more.
70g of cheddar cheese amounts to 280 calories, so if you were to eat 150g of cheese every day, you’d be getting 560 calories. 50% of your daily caloric requirements!
Two eggs a day would amount to 160 calories, assuming they’re hard boiled and not fried in butter or oil. That’s already 720 calories taken care of. I happen to have a pretty big lemon tree, which I use to make lemon juice with Stevia, all-year-round. If I were to swap the Stevia for regular table sugar — I could easily get myself to 900 calories.
The price of sugar, rice and (non-olive) oil should remain relatively steady and cheap throughout the recession, as these are fairly essential and non-perishable goods, and also great to have in a prepper pantry. They also tend to last you a long time, and can be bought in bulk. Consider it an insurance policy against literally starving to death. Always get brown rice if you can. Chances are — you could even germinate it in an SHTF type situation, and save rice plants from going extinct.
Mushrooms are great to have, especially fried. That would be a pleasant way to soak up some oil and get those extra calories you need.
You probably don’t wanna be keeping livestock on your prepper garden, and I don’t just say that because I’m a vegetarian. Livestock requires you to grow extra food, in addition to what you’re already growing, just to keep the animals fed. You’d be far better off going hunting or fishing.
Vitamin supplements are also a great idea to have, especially if you’re going the vegetarian route. In an SHTF situation you could easily be left without eggs and cheese, leaving you with no other choice but to take Omega 3 DHA/EPA and Vitamin B12 supplements. (And maybe spend some extra time in the sun to get that extra Vitamin D, or just eat more sun-bathed mushrooms).
Be sure to also keep a 1 year stockpile of whatever prescription medication you are taking, making sure to rotate them according to the expiry date. Use the old stuff first, new stuff last. If you can’t buy your medication online, then just get your scripts like 1–2 weeks earlier, and slowly build up your stockpile that way.
Grocery shopping isn’t even the most terrifying part about this recession. Just a few days ago, the US dollar shot up from $1.60 NZD to $1.80 NZD, and it keeps climing. Which means that online shopping is going to be something like 15%-25% more expensive.
Dropshippers on TradeMe have gone nuts with their price hikes, presumably scamming off boomers who do not yet how to use Aliexpress. One of them even blacklisted me, just because I forced them to give me a refund when Aramex lost one of my parcels containing a roll of 3d printing filament. Aramex is notorious for not just losing parcels, but also severely under-paying and over-working their staff (which probably explains the lost parcels).
Two shops ended up blacklisting me, actually — a shop called WinBox, and a shop called Digital NZ. Which leads me to assume that the guy owns both of them.
TradeMe is a sh*thole these days. It’s nearly impossible to find anything that actually has any New Zealand stock, and when you do — it’s either 3x the price, or just outright located in China, without telling you. Which means you get to wait 5 times as long for shipping, and still pay 3 times as much.
Aliexpress, on the other hand, has gotten a lot better. All of their parcels arrive with CourierPost/NZ post in about 2–3 weeks, a fairly reliable, government-owned and trustworthy mail and courier service. Unlike monstrosities like Aramex, which isn’t even a New Zealand based company. (United Arab Emirates).
I would avoid using TradeMe unless absolutely necessary. Hell — I’ve even thought about creating my own online auction site, though I fear that I may neither have the popularity, nor the charisma to successfully market this new website to kiwis. Facebook Marketplace is apparently where it’s at right now, so that should do I suppose.
The hard times aren’t coming anymore.
The hard times are already here — right at our doorstep.
It’s not just rents and house prices that are rising exponentially anymore. It’s groceries, online shopping, and basically everything.
They lied to our f***ing faces.
Mind you — I’m not here to promote a political ideology, party or candidate. I don’t really care about politics. I don’t Vote.
I’m just here to tell you we’re in a Recession.