Depending on where you live, look for the discount, wholesale warehouses, no-frills grocery, Open Markets or Farmer’s Markets, generic brands and the sale items in the weeks leading up to the holidays. If you only purchase from the large wholesale warehouses, you’ll find that you’re not saving as much as you thought because of over buying. Wholesale warehouses work to your advantage if you are having a large party, large family, or you’re sharing the costs with at least one other family.
Here are some examples of high quality groceries at the lowest prices:
No-Frills Grocery Stores
ALDI – A Food Market: According to their website and their advertised prices, U.S. shoppers enjoy up to 50% savings on 90% of their weekly shopping needs. There are over 1,000 stores nationwide and more internationally. ALDI is not in every state, like Hawaii, however there are stores like Don Quijote in and around Honolulu which provide good prices on groceries.
Open Markets also known as Farmer’s Markets
Search online for your community Open / Farmer’s Markets, preferably produce that is provided by your local farmers, not products bought from wholesalers and then resold at the Market. Many open markets have great prices on fresh fruits, vegetables, eggs, fish, etc. depending on what is readily available in your region. Usually these open markets are open in parking lots at community recreational parks (check with your local city & county).
According to the Southwest Orlando Bulletin, other areas have organizers like Red Top Productions which creates, builds, and manages farmers markets in Central Florida. These Open/Farmer’s Markets are set on a certain day and time of the week. Vendors move from community to community in order to reach customers. By reducing overhead, they carry all of their products in their vehicles and set up tables, sell their produce and pack up.
Many large chain stores have the name brand items and the generic or their own name brand products for much less. Basically read the labels. Most canned vegetables are made with the same ingredients and often if you researched in the same manufacturing plants! Things like flour, sugar, salt, and seasonings are really the same no matter the brand.
The difference between generic and name brand is mainly marketing costs and sometimes taste, as with soda or some cereals. However, I once heard that a mom tried to give her kids a generic cereal of which they turned their noise up to. The next time she bought the “brand” name cereal, she kept the box and filled it with the generic brand. Her kids never complained and she has been the wiser. I told my husband that story and he said he would be watching me. What’s interesting is that I bought the same brand cereal at Costco and the flakes were larger and my husband said it didn’t taste the same. When he did the comparison of ingredients it had less sugar. He said the raisins tasted “funny”.
What I find that no one can tell is generic is canned vegetables like corn, all types of beans, mushrooms, all forms of tomatoes, etc.
Another side tip about generic brands is over-the-counter meds – has the same ingredients and dosage and works the same. This is included here because many people get their meds at their grocery pharmacy and ibuprofen, naproxen, aspirin, and allergy pills are all sold as generics.
On – Sale and BOGO – Buy One Get One Free
The Sunday sales sections or your midweek newspapers will have more sales on Christmas items; however you’ll want to look at the BOGO – otherwise known as Buy One Get One Free, as seen with Publix Supermarkets. Be sure that the item is not overly priced and that you’re getting a real deal. Sales in drug stores like Long’s Drug Stores on the West Coast and Hawaii, and a smaller scale in Walgreens will often have canned goods and other food items for great sale prices. Stock up on you most used pantry staples and you’ll find that in the long run you’ll be saving time as well as your hard earned cash.
Southwest Orlando Bulletin