Is your monthly grocery spending eating up a big portion of your income? You’re not alone. Figures from the U.S. Department of Agriculture show that, on average, a family of four now spends up to $1,300 a month on the food it consumes at home. Here, let me do the math: that’s $15,600 annually!
Want to cut that cost by oh, let’s say HALF? You can if you are determined to become a smart shopper, employing every trick and tip in the book—without sacrificing your family’s health and joy of eating great food while keeping $7,500 or so in your pocket over the coming year.
CHOP CHOP. Sure, those precut bags of vegetables and single-serving packets of oatmeal are convenient, but Consumer Reports says you’ll pay twice as much. Worst offenders: Cut, washed and bagged veggies ($11 a lb. vs. $3 for, say, bulk broccoli), single-serving containers ($9.90 per oz. for oatmeal in envelopes vs. $1.59 for the canister) and sliced cheese ($2 more per pound). Do your own chopping, shredding, grating and measuring and you will save a bunch.
BUY RIGHT. Most of us simply buy more produce and other perishables than we can use before they spoil. A rotten apple here, a limp carrot there—it all means money in the trash. According to National Resources Defense Council, the average American household throws out 25 percent of the food they buy—$3,900 per year for our typical American family of four! Read more