The Joy of Costco by David & Susan Schwartz, illustrations by Martin Hargreaves

Borne of a love of all things Costco, a husband and wife duo created their own press and were given backstage access to Costco for this casual read.    In all, they visited 200 of Costco’s 850 worldwide locations.

Skim for a couple hours, you’ll be able to amaze your friends with tidbits such as:

  • Costco parking spots are 2ft wider
  • They sell 11 million eggs per day
  • Starbucks roasts all the Kirkland brand coffee
  • Costco sells 7x as many hotdogs as all MLB ballparks combined — at $1.50 of course, a doff of the cap to the same high prevailing price from 1985.
  • The record for hotdogs, incidentally, FAR from middle America…Shin Masato Japan with 64,512 hotdog combos in one month.

Speaking of baseball, one of the coolest features of this book is the inside baseball of their internal processes and terminology, i.e. “the cage” and “deathstar”.  Costco employees are incentivized to find  ways to reduce costs, internally known as a “Save Story”.  Mere tweaks to packaging and pallets, for example, result in seismic shifts to reduce CO2 emissions and landfill waste.

Due to Costco’s sheer size, they have incredible negotiating power as an entity.  Enter CWI, (Costco Wholesale Industries), a manufacturing subsidiary solely to reduce costs on products such as glasses, hotdogs, and ground beef.  Ostensibly, this benefit is exercised to pass the value on to members.  You don’t have to have a Gold Star membership to check The Joy of Costco: A Treasure Hunt from A to Z out of our collection, either.   Heck, we won’t even check for your card at the door.


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