Save Money On Food

As the cost of living in the UK rises, it seems the cost of food is increasing daily. I had a conversation with a friend about how to save money on food and we both agreed, “If only food wasn’t a necessity”. However, it is.

So, I started to consider how I saved money on food in the past. I have written about how to save money at the supermarket in the past but saving money on food is more than just a couple of tips, it’s about changing habits.

Supermarket: They’re All The Same, Aren’t They?

I always thought that supermarkets were all the same, just with different branding. But I’m wrong. I’m not talking about the difference between Tesco and Asda. Yes, you can save £1.50 if you shop at Asda over Tesco but if your petrol costs £2.00 to get to Asda and 50 pence to drive to Tesco there’s no profit.

I mean, have you ever been into Aldi or Lidl? These are discount shops which don’t stock the typical products you would expect. Yes, they have the usual products but without the brand and at a fraction of the price.

The major supermarkets don’t discount as well as they should and becoming wise to this is the key to saving money.

Major supermarkets keep the margin high on things like shampoo, conditioner, deodorants and frozen foods. I saved 20% on my last shop when I went to Farmfoods because the prices were so low. I usually buy the same items so it’s a perfect comparison. The freezer foods at Farmfoods are the same products but at a lower price. For £20 I can stock my freezer when I visit Farmfoods, whereas there’s a marked different at Asda or Tesco.

Do you notice that frozen chicken may be £2.75 in Asda but only £2.00 in Farmfoods? If you make a saving of 75 pence for every items in your freezer and let’s say you purchase 20 items, then that’s a £15 saving!

Own Brand Vs Branded Food

Compromise is the key when it comes to saving money.

I love Heinz beans and I won’t change brand. I’ve tried and it’s not the same, not even the more expensive kind can compare to the delicious taste of Heinz beans on toast. Yum! So, I accept I’ll pay a little more for each tin of beans.

However, I’m not precious over which Oat based cereal I eat in the morning. In truth, I’m a little adventurous with my breakfast, so bring on the challenge! As a result, I switched from a £3.00 box of cereal to a £1.50, saving 50%. What’s better is I can’t tell the difference.

The branded products are not poorer quality. Often the difference is that a branded item needs marketing and advertising, so that’s what we’re paying for. The branded products are tasty and delicious.

If you’ve not tried them, it’s time to give it a go!

Shop Online

It’s a pleasure to browse through the supermarket with my kids but you can save money by using online shopping. There are many reasons for this such as:

  • You’re not using petrol to visit the supermarket
  • You can plan meals more efficiently by only clicking the items you need
  • You won’t get tempted by the delicious array of extra foods you “don’t really need, but it’s a treat”
  • The cafe won’t draw you in
  • You won’t visit the clothing section and think… hmm, maybe just one t-shirt

Vouchers

Supermarket vouchers are vital to saving money. My supermarket gives me a “Save 10% when you spend £40 or more in your next shop” voucher and I love it.

I’m always in the supermarket and it’s now a place where a large percentage of money is spent. Any saving is greatly appreciated. The supermarkets give vouchers and coupons to try and encourage loyalty, which in my opinion will never work, but hey, “never look a gift horse in the mouth”.

Ways to Save Money?

What ways do you save money? There are plenty of options and creative methods to save money on food at the supermarket, it’s just about finding what works for you.

I won’t change my Heinz beans but I will open myself up and try other avenues to save money.

How do you save money on Food? Does your budget determine your food or do you determine the budget? Do you eat non-branded foods and if so what do you think?

I don’t bite, so feel free to disagree or add your own spin on ways to save money on food.

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John The Bankruptcy Guy

As an ex-bankrupt, John has experienced the highs and lows of credit. It's with this knowledge that he writes Debt Advice Resource - to help others avoid, or navigate out of, the pitfalls of debt.

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One Response

  1. Money Beagle
    Money Beagle April 11, 2013 at 2:53 pm | | Reply

    I would advise some variation of the following, which works for us:
    1) Look at the weekly ads
    2) Create meal plans based on items that can be purchased on sale
    3) Look to stack coupons along with sale prices to get extra discounts
    4) Make a shopping list. It’s OK to stock up on items you may not need that week so long as you do use them in future planning.
    5) Stick to the shopping list

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