The amount of money that you spend grocery shopping each year will almost certainly total several thousand dollars. With a little knowledge and know-how about planning ahead, you might be able to reduce your annual grocery bill by over $1,000.
Planning your meals and your shopping list
Where you are able to plan your family’s meals for at least a week ahead, you will also be able to formulate a detailed shopping list. When you complete your grocery shopping with a specific list of items that you need to purchase, you will not be tempted to buy extra items that you do not really need or cannot afford. Moreover, when you walk idly around a grocery shop without a list of items to purchase, you might not remember what’s in your fridge at home. You may end up buying items that you already own. When you formulate your shopping list, you will check your refrigerator and cupboards to see if you already have the items you are going to require for the family’s meals.
Creating an organised list will save you time and money. It does not matter if you’re shopping for one person or five because the process you go through will be identical. You can keep a list of items that you require, on your fridge. When an item is running low or has finished, you need only to add it to your list.
To make effective use of your food purchases and to avoid wasting money, it is better for you to use fresh fruit and vegetables just after you have purchase them. This will rapidly reduce the amount of food that you my waste or throw away.
You can make vast savings by purchasing your food in bulk from wholesalers, if you have sufficient spare cash to be able to complete this task regularly. If this means that you are buying food in quantities that are too large for you, you can share this assignment with family or close friends.
It pays to look out for the items that you require, when they are on sale. If they are items that you use regularly, you can purchase extra amounts, but purchasing items purely because they are on sale is not the best way to plan your cash flow and food purchases.
The big tip
To save on your electricity and cooking costs, it is worthwhile cooking more food than you expect to eat so these you can put some away in your freezer for another day. This will save you ordering fast food when you can’t be bothered to cook and will reduce your cooking time overall.
By getting into good habits, you can consistently plan your meals and shop only for the items that you require, saving you spending money you don’t need to waste and making your cooking and eating more efficient for your family.
Samuel Rosenberg is the founder and CEO of Axcel Finance Ltd., the leading regional microfinance institution. Share your thoughts and email your questions to [email protected]