Friday, March 28, 2014

Supermarket Survival

One of the household tasks that I absolutely hate the most is grocery shopping. I find it intimidating, and I really feel the pressure to "do it right", so when I buy something that I shouldn't I feel a lot of guilt. It doesn't seem fair that most of the store intentions are to trick you into spending more money on foods that aren't that great food you. It feels like an mission into enemy territory.

I would like to say that it doesn't have to be that way, but I haven't exactly found a way around it yet. Shopping at roadside produce stands, and farmer's markets can greatly add to the pleasure of your food buying experience. But it still feels like the big bog stores and the chain marts are still out to get me and gobble up my little grocery budget on things that won't nourish my family, but make them lots of money.

I found this AMAZING super market guide that I wanted to share with you. It has great tips for grocery shopping smarter in every area of the store.

Food $ense also has a really smart shopping guide to help. Here is there super market shopping guide with their ideas on how to make us smarter more savvy shoppers.

And here are some ideas from SNAP-Ed

It can be a challenge to make healthy food choices and stay within your food budget. Here are some tips to help you get the most from your grocery budget:

Take an inventory of the food you already have in your home. Plan your meals for the week, keeping in mind what you already have in your pantry.

Make a shopping list and stick to it.

Compare unit prices (cost per ounce or pound) to determmine if you are getting the best deal.

Buy the generic store brand versions of foods.

Take advantage of store loyalty savings programs, as well as clipping coupons and online discounts.
Remember that stores retain your purchase habits. Make sure you are protecting your privacy and know your rights.

Only take advantage of the deal if you know you will eat the discounted item. It’s not a deal if the food goes to waste.

Shop the perimeter of the store for nutrient dense foods. Processed and packaged foods tend to be more expensive.

Visit your local farmer’s market to find fresh produce. Arrive early to get the best selection or late to get the best deals. Fresh food spoils quickly so don’t buy more than you can eat or freeze. Find your local farmers market.

Shop for foods that are in season. When the supply is plentiful, the prices tend to be lower.

Some stores offer discounts to customers for bringing their own bags.

We don't have to be at the mercy of our the stores eating up our grocery budgets. A few smart tricks and lots of informed shopping can make us the masters of our own fate.  - And we can use our food budgets fully nourishing our families and taking care of ourselves.  Remember to always plan, the most expensive food item you can buy is the one you end up not using.