Food Rates: Canada vs. USA

American food portions and rates

Being a native Canada I am continuously comparing the differences between Canada and the States.
Considering how we are not far apart you wouldn’t think they would have so many differences.After recently traveling to Boston  I noticed a number of obvious differences in the American culture. However, there was one thing that boggled me and that is the HUGE difference in food pricing and portions. That being said, I wanted to purchase some candy during my trip to satisfy my cravings and I went to the CVS in Boston and I was in pure heaven. A package of nerds three time the size Canada sold was the exact same price at $1.69/box.

American Portion
American Portion
Canadian Portion
Canadian Portion

I went to many restaurants and the portions were so big I was able to get takeouts for a second meal, two in one! It made me wonder how it was possible to have food and products not just with much larger portions but also generally a lot cheaper . Boston and New York have extremely expensive real estate rates so I couldn’t help but wonder how it was possible that the restaurants could stay open while providing  larger portions at cheaper prices and still be able to afford the ridiculously overly priced commercial rental rates.

I believe it is the same reason we always end up sick in cheap resort vacations like Cuba or Cancun; Because the food standards are different – American food production companies can produce their foods with a cheaper method as well as different ingredients. When you have McDonalds in the states it tastes completely different( much worse in my opinion).It always blew my mind because within ever country there is a different standard for the quality which effects taste and health. Another reason for the cheaper prices is perhaps the fact that Canada doesn’t want their residents eating too much junk so they hike up the prices. Many of the junk products in the U.S are not allowed to be sold in Canada such as the SUPER SIZED soda drinks they have (see diagram below)..


AP_Sugary_Drinks-x-largeDoes anyone have any contribution to the reason of the price differences? What are you
thoughts on the low food standards in some countries?


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10 thoughts on “Food Rates: Canada vs. USA”

  1. I noticed the same when I went down to Vermont last year. 20 McNuggets for 5$ . We are definitely overpaying for food here, north of the border.

  2. t goes by demand. obviously businesses here know they dont need to lower prices because thats our standards. in america its normal to eat a lot. its like the phone companies in europe are dirt cheap and here are really expensive but slowly, people are beginning to complain and phone plans got cheaper

    1. I agree, but how did the demand become so big in the first place? Perhaps the work ethic most Americans have – Giving how they have less time they tend to order out more which created obesity thus creating a demand for bigger portions. Great point! Thanks for sharing!


  3. A few things that came up. Consumerism, inflation, exchange rates, the value of the American dollar, the average American salary and the average spending from American citizens on fast food/junk.

  4. I am always stumped by our huge containers here in the U.S. For a single person, it is a nightmare. No one wants to cook a meal and then commit to eating the same meal for 4 days. So for many, you end up wasting food which is terrible.

    Traveling has opened my eyes to what a decent portion should be. You end up using the food when it is prime.

    Should I be wearing safety equipment when I eat as well? It is a nice helmet.

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