Arrivederci,?Ciao Bella.? For several years, our local grocery story carried a brand of coconut sorbet,?Ciao Bella, which we had for dessert several times a week.? It was $5 per pint-pretty expensive-but worth much more than every penny. In the last month, it hasn’t been on the store’s shelves.? The manager informs me that they will not be stocking it; although it sells well in his store, the chain purchases centrally, and it just won’t sell in their other stores.
My?preferences and income are not so different from my near neighbors’, but all of ours apparently differ from preferences and incomes in the chain’s selling area (all of Texas). (Austin is weird!) And that makes the chain unwilling to bear the cost of using its central purchasing facilities to buy this specialty item.? I, and I’d bet other purchasers, derive substantial?consumer surplus from this sorbet and would be happy to pay $7 for it.? What prevents the chain from ordering it on a small scale, just for this one outlet, and charging a price sufficient to offset the higher cost?