i agree with you that such top quality work should be rewarded and actually do not mind paying extra for higher quality freshly made food, In fact before coming here i used to spend higher percentage of my disposable income on food. But if they raise the prices above reasonable i will not be as motivated. I stopped going to Whole Foods often since I can go to Berkeley Bowl and buy same or better staff for cheaper. But if we buy more and spread the word he will have a higher turnover and will be financially ok. Let's say you sell 2 items for $5 each. Your cost basis is $3. So you profit on 2 items is $4. If you raise the price to $6 you might sell two items with a profit of $6. But if you keep the same price and sell 3 items your profit will be $6 as well. In fact his costs per item will go down bcs of the economy of scale and you might sell even more than 3 since people will buy more at lower prices.
Let me start by saying that I am a fan of this place. I live two blocks from the place and has been a regular customer since i discovered it. Few observations i would like to make. - Being originally from Europe i noticed that people in America are so used to the average quality of food that anything of higher standard is expected to be found only in high priced restaurants. When i first came here i was shocked how most people are accustomed to eating non delicious and non fresh food. Of course, Berkeley is sort of an exception. - So, why is everyone screaming that prices are so low? Personally, I do not think the prices are terribly low. They are low compared to the similar prices of the similar lower quality mass produced items. But if you shift the paradigm and think that people should not be paying arm and leg for a delicious food then the prices are not too low. If they raise the prices I will definitely think twice before buying. I think if they raise prices the products will not sell as fast and will be left on the shelves and will get old. The beauty of this place is that it is locally owned, small, freshly made, people oriented business and not some high end snobbish profit only driven faceless business. Living off Solano I can only name few places (unfortunately) like that. Maybe it is too low for someone who is not counting his money (like many people living on the higher hills east of Bedaine) but for some folks like me the price is right.