Shortly after we first arrived, I was invited to the neighbor's house for tea. We were chatting as she was pulling juice and snacks out for the kids, and she said, "My refrigerator is packed, we just went to Sweden yesterday!" That seemed like quite a non sequitur to me, but she quickly explained. Norwegian prices on everything (as we have mentioned endlessly, it seems!) are very high. Swedish food prices are slightly lower, and meat in particular is much cheaper there. We live less than 2 hours from the Swedish border, so it is very common in our area for people to make a monthly trek just across the border to shop in Sweden.
I thought the school's holiday break would be a good opportunity for us to try this Norwegian custom. We had a great day for a drive--sunny and partly-cloudy but not bitterly cold. The route we took wound around a bit, but in a very scenic way (I could enjoy it, the Professor was driving!).
We found the area that had been recommended by neighbors, and, of course, there was a good-sized shopping mall there, including a large grocery store (and an adjacent hotel, in case you were really into shopping!). We took a turn through the mall to see what was there and found this candy store. Young teen commented that the smell alone must have contained sugar calories! In addition to selling all kinds of Swedish and Norwegian candy, and imports as well (like a wall of M&Ms), they had a center section where you could bag your own candy and pay by weight. We let each of the kids pick out a small scoop of something.
I forgot to take many photos of the grocery store, but they did have a large meat section. We found beef was the biggest "savings" over Norwegian prices--about half price. Chicken, also, was noticeably cheaper. We loaded up on both, then had an ice cream cone at the food court before heading home again. Now to ponder supper . . . beef chili? beef stroganoff? roast beef? hmmmm....
This last photo is for my family--this is the selection of pickled herring choices at the Swedish grocery store. Our local selection is pretty equivalent. Does that make you green with envy?? (or maybe you don't like pickled herring, and it just makes you green?)