What’s Your One Tip for Saving on Groceries?
As the New Year gets rolling and I try to cut back more and more on our grocery bill, the USDA says grocery costs are likely to rise up to 4% this year. Okay, so 4% doesn’t SOUND like a lot, but if you typically spend $100 each week on groceries this is an increase of $16 per month or almost $200 for the year. And $200 DOES sound like a lot!
What’s causing this rise in prices? Seems we can blame the drought conditions this year. This article states meat, poultry, and dairy prices will all be affected by too little rain. While I am not a huge meat eater, we do eat meat at the majority of our meals each week, and we do consume quite a bit of dairy in the way of milk, yogurt, cheese, and (I’ll whisper this last one) ice cream.
So knowing we’ll be facing an increase in prices at the grocery store, I’ve been continuing to find ways to reduce my costs. Just this past week I’ve realized a few things.
The dollar store in our area has some great deals on groceries. Now, I don’t shop them for everything, because I’ve found in some instances I actually pay more for items there than at the grocery store when I shop sales with coupons. BUT last week I bought a container of black tea for $1, which would cost at least double that even on sale. I also picked up a sweet to bake cheaper than I could get at the regular store, and unless I hit a great sale on toothpaste at CVS I can get my toothpaste at the dollar store more cheaply than anywhere else.
The farmer’s market in my town offers better deals on most fruits and veggies. Plus, they are local sellers. While I don’t get down to our market often, when I do I often find great deals on in-season produce. I also love the fact that I’m buying local and supporting my local growers.
Walgreens (and other drugstores) have some great deals! Yes, I knew this, but yet I continue to avoid these stores for everyday items. My biggest problem: the good stuff gets bought up before I can get there. This week, though, I bought two containers of honey for $5! I also got a few Valentine’s Day treats for my girls and dish detergent for under $1 when I used a coupon.
What is one thing you do when shopping to combat the rising prices of groceries? Do you feel the increase in prices will affect your family negatively?
Image via Flickr: NatalieMaynor