While purchasing generic branded products over more expensive brands or buying in bulk may save you money each week, there is an interesting way to shave thousands more off your grocery bill each year.
Buying cheaper brands is, as savings guru AJ Wilson puts it, “a good strategy, but it’s not a great strategy”.
He says that while it’s a good way to save money, it doesn’t challenge your budget, and challenging your budget is where you can save even more money in the long run.
Instead of buying cheaper brands each week, he takes a different tack by focusing on specials and reduced-price items.
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This means that he may go to the supermarket with a shopping list, but will change the list to take advantage of cheaper items.
“My old strategy would see me visiting the grocery store to buy the ingredients for spaghetti bolognaise – a key staple in our household and very cheap to make,” writes Mr Wilson.
“Instead of grabbing the cheapest mince, the cheapest sauce and the cheapest $1 pasta, I would first check whether there were any specials that would see me completely change my purchases. For instance, chicken was dramatically cheaper than beef due to markdowns, thus I scrapped my intent to cook bolognaise and instead focused on a dish that uses chicken.”
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Mr Wilson also suggests that shopping later in the day dramatically improves your prospects of spotting marked-down items.
Along with this strategy, he recommends choosing generic cleaning agents, buying seasonal fruit and limited-edition versions of products that are no longer sold.
Adopters of this strategy may also have to try products they’ve never tried before and may also be forced into trying new recipes based on cheaper ingredients.
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This method will see your weekly grocery bill vary, mostly in a downward direction and you can use the extra money to help pay bills, put more into super or savings or even treat yourself a little.