Since childhood, I have been an avid Robert Heinlein fan (yes, despite his depiction of women in his later works) and one of my favorite aphorisms that Heinlein popularized is TANSTAAFL – “there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.”

My last grocery store receipt brings this phrase to mind. € 24.35 after discounts for 1+ kilo grains, 850 grams meat, 3+ kilos veggies, 500 grams cheese, a liter milk, other dairy products … With one exception, all products are 100% Austrian and 100% organic. How can the total be so low!?

I’m not asking to pay more for groceries. However, there are hidden opportunity costs that someone is paying for – see Milton Friedman’s There’s No Such Thing as a Free Lunch (1975). The question is… who? Me, because I gave my personal data to the store? Me again, through taxes that finance farm subsidies? Someone else? Leave a comment.

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