Let’s face it – grocery shopping can be expensive and take a significant bite out of your paycheck, especially when buying for a hungry family. According to a recent news release published by the United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics, food represented the third largest annual expenditure in 2015, costing an average of $146 per week. Our busy, on-the-go lifestyles have resulted in nearly $63 spent on food away from home each week, a figure that continues to increase each year.
In light of a fresh start to 2017, make one of your New Year’s resolutions to eat better AND save money on the food/beverages you purchase. You may already be asking yourself – how is it even possible to eat “healthier” while pocketing some extra cash at the same time? Try putting these practical, money-saving tips into action:
- Start smart.
Each month, set some time aside to perform a pantry inventory. Determine the items that you have on hand and when they are best consumed by. Not only will this help prevent you from purchasing doubles, but it will encourage you to use non-perishables that were purchased a few months ago, therefore, reducing food waste. Consider the following:
a. Clearly label the front and top of each non-perishable item with the “best if used by/best before” or “use by/before” date using a permanent marker. Rotate items that are nearing the specified date toward the front of the pantry so they can be used first.
b. Organizing your pantry into sections (canned goods, herbs and spices, grains) will make it easier to locate food/beverage items and cut back on time it takes to create your grocery list.
- Plan ahead.
Ditch the scissors and grab your smartphone. Consider downloading coupon apps to cut back on your bill. If possible, try loading coupons onto your store loyalty card so they will be easily accessible at checkout. Additionally, make time to review weekly sale ads. Plan your meals around items that will be on sale for the week and create a grocery list from there. Phone apps that allow you to build a grocery list may be beneficial, especially if you always forget handwritten grocery lists or can never remember that one ingredient.
Read more on… 10 Smart Tips To Spend Less While Grocery Shopping
Author: Lindsay MacNab