Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Samplicious: Worth the Fee

Most of you know how much I love to get samples.  Up until recently they were free for the asking, and several of the things I tried as samples, or even prizes, are now frequently used products around my home. 

More recently some of the big companies have decided to send samples for a fee. The fees aren't large, and I suspect, with the popularity of these packages, the mailing costs just went through the roof with the latest postage increase.

I ignored the first offering from Kraft but last month I simply couldn't resist sending for their latest Samplicious Sample pack.  It cost me $9, but there was a lot for the money.  It came with full sized versions of various products, not just little downsized packets.  There was also two coupons for free items to pick up from the store.  I understood immediately why they didn't include these particular products in the shipment. They were both to be found in the refrigerated section of the grocery store and would not have withstood shipping by regular mail.

The package included:
1.  A  .75 pound package of coffee from Second Cup,  described as having a fruity, wine-like sweetness. I'm not a coffee drinker, so I have to rely on my hubby for an opinion on this.  After a couple of tries, he got the measurement right and declared it to be good coffee.  He has since served it to a sister-in-law, who accepted a refill when offered.  This product was included in the package as a way of letting us know that Second Cup Paradiso Medium Roast Coffee is now available at your local grocery store.

2.  Jello Instant Vanilla Pudding, 4 serving size. As this is not a new product, I imagine it was included because of Mixed Berry Shortcakes recipe that appears in the Samplicious booklet that had the coupons in it.  The pudding, of course, will not go to waste here.

3.  Kraft Peanut Butter with Chocolate.  What a treat!  I often make myself a peanut butter and banana sandwich and the addition of the chocolate makes it even better.  This product does not spread as smoothly on bread as regular peanut butter (unless it's toasted and the bread is still warm), but it spreads just like icing on a tortilla! The Kraft people knew what they were doing when they put this collection together. They wanted us to buy products we don't normally buy and they got me with this one. It will be a regular here in the future!  Heck, it's even better for me than the normal peanut butter as it has less fat and less sodium for the same number of calories. Sold!

4.  Crystal Light Liquid Drink Mix, has zero calories. The one I got was  Blackberry Lemonade, and while I like it, the package states that it has a shelf life of only one month from the time the container has been opened.  I think I'll stick to the crystals.  They are also easier to take with you, in case you decide you want to add some flavour to a bottle of water along the way.

5.  Kool-Aid Liquid Drink Mix brings back memories.  For some reason the booklet refers to it as "kids-only fun" and since I am busy using up the Crystal Light before it expires, I have not tried the Kool-Aid yet.  It also has a package suggestion that it be used within a month of opening.  That's too bad as it would be handy to have around when my grandsons visit, but it would never be used up in time.  I'm starting to wonder if the reason for the company introducing the liquid drink mixes is to make us use them up faster and keep buying more.  No way.  Give me the longer shelf life of crystals, or I'll find someone who does.

6. Kraft Dinner Spicy Cheddar Macaroni & Cheese.  Hmmmm......this family does NOT eat Kraft Dinner.  Oh, I have occasionally used it like hamburger helper to make some other dish, but never alone.  The idea that this one is spicier may make it taste better, or make it harder to use in the alternate way....I'm not sure which yet.  I checked out the recipes in both the booklet and the
(7.) summer copy of What's Cooking that came in the package.  I've always enjoyed the What's Cooking magazine and that's where I got the idea to use regular Kraft Dinner as an add in to other ingredients.  I didn't find anything in this one,or even on their website, suggesting a use for this new Kraft Dinner.  I have a feeling I won't be in a hurry to use it.  I passed the magazine to my daughter-in-law, as I already had a copy.

8. A coupon for a free Kraft Philadelphia Dip was something I couldn't wait to use.  I get the feeling I was supposed to try the onion dip, by the questions the follow up survey had, but it didn't specify that. We like the Dill Pickle Dip, but since the store was out of that when I went, and since I am, after all sampling, I decided to try the Ranch Dip this time.  Love it.  It won't be good for my waste line though, as I've already gone through a couple of bags of potato chips since that came into the house, and it isn't even half gone.  And no, I'm not wasting this treat on vegetables! 

9. The remaining coupon is for a free 300g package of Kraft Shredded Cheese with a touch of Philadelphia.  We go through a lot of cheese here, but I've never bought pre-shredded cheese before. As I recently had to shred and freeze half a brick of mozzarella that threatened to mould on me while we were on holidays, I have enough shredded cheese here at the moment, but I'm looking forward to collecting my free package of cheese when that's done.  The coupon is good until March 31st, 2015, and is good for any of Creamy Mozza, Creamy Herb & Garlic or Creamy Mexicana.  If any of you have tried any of these and have a favorite recipe using one of them, I'd love to hear from you!

So, there you have it.  Nine items plus a booklet, for $9.  On the back of the booklet I found an address where I was able to go and print off more coupons to reduce the price of future Kraft purchases.  You might want to visit that yourself. Go to:  kraftcanada.com/coupons 

I'm quite satisfied with this experience, and will be watching for the next one.  Maybe you will too.

1 comment:

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