Howdy everyone! Yesterday and today are grocery ad days. I usually get a copy on Wednesday (as sales start then), and another copy on Thursday. I look at them every week - but many weeks I don't go shopping.
There is no need to for me - as I have plenty here. If I see a great deal, I will go and try to participate. Of course there are the clearance aisles - I love to look there.
There are a lot of little tips that can save you some money if you just take the time to plan.
The front page of the ad is probably the best deals of the ad. It has all the items that are marked really low trying to draw you in, and it is often fresh items. (Loss leaders). The stores don't make much money on those items - but they are used to bring you in and thus you buy those and MANY MORE items!
The remainder of most ads is junk and non-healthy items. Highly processed foods, junk food, and non food items make up remainder of ad.
Think about sales and stock-up accordingly. There are a couple ways to save.
Seasonal sales - the things we all buy at certain times of the year. Hotdogs, condiments, turkey, ham, cream soups, baked beans, fresh citrus, apples, etc.
Cyclical sales - sales that hit every so many weeks. Kind of watch and keep track. Usually these happen every 6, 9 or 12 weeks. You can usually figure out the schedule. Keep at least enough of those items to last until the next time.
Clearance - ALWAYS check the clearance sections. Items are not necessarily about to become dated (best by) - they are most often over stock. Crazy as that sounds - it is what happens at a lot of stores. You would think they would like having extra stock - but no. I was told by my grocer that once they fill the regular aisle up - all extra gets marked down and put in clearance. So the same item can cost 2 different prices at the same time. They want nothing in their back rooms. This is something we all need to remember - as it means that WHAT YOU SEE IS ALL THERE IS!!!!!!! This is why a grocery can be wiped out of stock in an emergency in no time. Kind of scary.
Check produce, bakery, dairy, meat sections as well for markdowns. Those areas generally have markdowns when getting close to sell by or best by dates. Get it and can or freeze it!!!!
Shop the perimeter of the store for the healthiest products. Think about it - produce, deli, meat, and dairy are all on the perimeter. These are the REAL foods! Highly processed foods are in the middle of the store.
Look high and low - for better prices. Generally the most expensive items are at eye level - that is where you look first and they know it. Off brands and store brands are usually up or down. Most times the quality is the same of better. You would be amazed at how many different brands are processed at the same facility and just labeled differently!!!!
End caps are highly visual displays made to catch your attention. They are not necessarily sales! Chips, pop, processed food - it's all there. Not usually real food or special prices. Don't be fooled.
Coupons used to be a great way to save - not so much any more. Most coupons are for high priced items or highly processed goods. I remember the days of double and triple coupons and the days of .40 and .50+ coupons. Those are unheard of today. I used to go crazy with coupons - and get tons of items for almost nothing. I could have a deep cart over flowing and maybe spend $10. Not possible today. I very seldom use a coupon - maybe for cat food or hair dye - not much else.
If you can find a good coupon for a good product - use it. That is free money.
Now that gardens are starting to produce - I won't be going to the store much at all. I would rather spend my dollars at a produce stand if need be. Our produce stands are mainly local people selling their goods - and I like supporting local.
Take time and watch ads and really study them. When you find a super sale - stock up!!! Prices will positively keep going up - no doubt about it. It is called inflation and supply and demand. Whatever you can get cheaply now is a dollar saved in the future. Try to keep yourself stoked up WELL.
REMEMBER last year!!!!!!! Think about those things that disappeared on the shelves - it could happen again. Be prepared.
No one knows what the future holds for us. We have to be able to depend on ourselves. You and you alone are responsible for making sure you and your families are supplied and prepared.
Be prepared NOT scared or frightened of the future.
So watch your ads and know how they work. Watch for un-advertised markdowns, clearance and local deals. Check out farm stands and local farmers and growers (you are helping your community). Stock as much as you possibly can and never be stuck without.
PLAN, PLAN, PLAN - and HAPPY SHOPPING!!!!!!!
I recently read where supermarket chains are buying as much non-perishable stock as they can and warehousing it for as much as a year in the future. Buying at today's (wholesale) prices and selling at tomorrow's (inflated) retail. The article went on to say that this will lead to shortages in stores as the companies trickle their products out to the consumer. Another reason to stock up now at today's prices while items are still in stock.ReplyDelete
WOW - hadn't heard that one. Thanks, good to know. It's all about making the almighty dollar today - not about customer service. Sad!Delete
Here is the link to the article: https://www.wsj.com/articles/supermarkets-are-stockpiling-inventory-as-food-costs-rise-11625572980 (cut & paste into your browser)Delete
I think it is more about staying in business. They are having to pay higher wages just to get employees and have to cut expenses wherever they can.
Thanks - will check it outDelete
I saw that article too! Looks like the rising prices will be a thing. Went to Aldi this week to find their stock of canned chicken, which they had boxes and boxes of even during the worst of the panic buying last year, reduced to just 5 cans, with one of them dented! That chicken is delicious and has no funky preservatives or "natural" flavorings. God always provides though, as you say Cheryl, have to be flexible and always look for the bargains!Delete
Valerie I agree rising prices is part of the future. We can't be too rigid or we may do without!!!Delete
Yes Mam, the Lord always provides. He will direct us where we need to be and when. We just need to listen.
I have to see enough great deals to make a trip worthwhile. Most of the time we just skip shopping other than Aldi for perishable items. The discount stores are another game all together. We stop if we are near them and are feeling like we will be able to shop wisely. Too bad we cannot stockpile gas. This morning we were shocked to see that gas went up 19 cents overnight. Hubby had just filled up the van on Monday so we did get one last tank for less.ReplyDelete
I don't shop often either. I, like you want to see some good deals advertised first.Delete
I like Menard's or Rural King - but haven't been to either in ages!!!!
I filled up last week (didn't need much) - but got it for 2.95 - now it is 3.09.
Up and down - it is all a game to the providers. I guess they like to see people squirm!
Oh, I love to read the grocery sale ads, they come out here on Wednesday too. I know they have a lot of items I wouldn’t buy, but I am looking to cherry pick. LOL You never know what gems you’ll find.ReplyDelete
Absolutely correct. Always keep those eyes open and be alert. May run right into a deal!!!Delete
I love to read the grocery sale ads every Wednesday. As for any great stock-up deals though the last two weeks have been slim pickings. Oh, for the good old days of coupons for "real food". I also remember when rebates on food and HBA items were plentiful. Do you remember a publication called Refundle Bundle? It used to be a great resource for stretching shopping dollars.ReplyDelete
The ads are very enticing for sure! Candy for the eyes!!Delete
There used to be so many great ways to save and coupon and refund. Shoot years ago you even got green or yellow stamps to use to buy things! My Mom got more presents with green stamps!
All we can do now is sigh and remember!
I remember Refundle Bundle. She also wrote a weekly column that appeared in The Oregonian in the 1980s.Delete
SO ABOUT MY BROWN SUGAR PROBLEM????ReplyDelete
Use it or give it away. If it is soft it is good. Seal bags in a tin can like a popcorn tin for down the road.Delete
Use it in anything that takes sugar - it just becomes more flavorful!
I have brown and powdered sugar I got on clearance in winter 2019 and I won't buy any more for ages.
Holidays will be here soon - and fall - lots of good uses for fall cooking. Use it up kiddo - even if it takes years.
TO EVERYONE: Kim mentioned on her blog Out My Window about how much brown sugar she found she had. I am just helping her out with an idea or two.
Kim, I don't know how much brown sugar you have, but you can put hard brown sugar in a closed container along with a slice of bread (I usually tear it into several pieces) and it will rehydrate within a day or so. I usually just leave the bread in with the brown sugar and it stays soft. If it does eventually re-harden, just repeat the process. If you have a lot, do some baking for the freezer to use it up.Delete
These are such great tips! I never thought about some of these.ReplyDelete
Thanks - glad they helpedDelete
This past year has just confirmed for me how important a pantry full of food can be (even if my family and friends tended to laugh at me) and I have certainly cut back on the number of times I shop and I've been curtailed as to where I can shop when trying to limit travel on public transit.ReplyDelete
I belong to a Loyalty Point group and I'm lucky in that the Supermarket chain that I belong to actually have grocery stores under different names with different levels of stock and at different price points - along with one of our largest drugstore chains. I have gotten quite good at combining offers with extra point days etc. Coupons have never been the big deal in Canada that they are in the US so not something that I use often.
Prices are definitely rising so I try to stock up on items whenever they are on sale so as not to pay full price. I have recently had a good tidy up in my pantry and I've made a note of what needs to be added before the Fall.
I have missed getting meat at 50% off as I haven't been to the shops where I normally get those deals - I'll be a bit more adventurous now that I am fully vaccinated.
I have a friend with a COSTCO membership and she will take me a couple of times a year for items that I can't get at other shops or that I want to stock up on. We have plans for a trip around the end of August. While I understand why some people choose to shop at Walmart, it is not a store that I will use no matter what the price point. I realize that I am very lucky to be able to make that choice and others won't be able to turn down the prices or the convenience factor.
I've also been seeing a lot of articles about stores stocking up in massive warehouses and I fully expect more shortages and increased prices due to the drought out west and too much rain in other places. It is going to be a tough year or two.
You are lucky to have many places to shop and different price points. Smart to stock when you find those sale prices for sure.Delete
I used to belong to Sam's Club and went 1X or 2X a year. I let that membership go - just wasn't worth it to me. Pretty good drive as well.
I am not a WM fan either. I go only for cat food when necessary. I have a couple family members that have worked there for years - but it about the only major employer in the rural spots they live.
That drought has been happening for years in CA - and there have been so many fires and other natural weather problems. Yes, we need to be prepared for whatever.
We get the usual ads in the mail except for Meijer. I get their weekly ads via email. Meijer sends out coupons based on your shopping habits and they are usually pretty good savings. The Urban Farmer had read the stories about grocery companies stocking product so they can sell it later at a much inflated price. To Margie from Toronto: Wal-Mart does not always have the best prices. They have also gone to almost total self-scan, which I refuse to do for a large order. That being said, everyone has her favorite store. I must be the only person in the Northern Hemisphere who doesn't care for Aldi. A lady in a store got really upset with me and asked if it was because it is a German company. Patently absurd comment. However, I digress. Each person knows what her family will eat and will rightly take advantage of the best price point. We are fortunate to have a variety of places shop within a few miles. Yes, Menards and Rural King are fun to poke around in. Ah, collecting Green stamps and Yellow stamps and pasting them in the books. Do you remember the Wake Up gas stations? They had some sort of reward program involving stamps. We use the Advantage card at Get Go for a better price. Of course when you don't go many places, you don't use as much gas. 😉ReplyDelete
With the storm that is going through right now, I'm wondering what it is doing to the garden. For some unknown reason we had a large tree limb come down from one of the sweet gum trees earlier today. The Urban Farmer got out the electric chainsaw and made short order of the mess.
Yes, the Meijer coupons are nice and usually decent - but kind of scary. Just shows how much our actions are being tracked!!!Delete
I do like ALdi - nice prices. I don't mind the way they display and bagging my own stuff. I just won't do self checkout like you. I DON'T work there!!!!!
My raised garden and containers are surrounded by a lake this morning. So much rain and more coming! UGH. Sure wish we could send it else where.
Hate that Meijer is tracking my purchases, but love, love, love the coupons that I get from them!!!!Delete
Playing the devil's advocate here...while consumers tend to think that stores are buying up stock so they can sell it later at inflated prices (and I'm sure there is some of that), consider the expense of buying and storing the food. There is only so much warehouse space. Buying stock in advance is expensive. Acquiring more warehouse space is expensive. I'm inclined to think this is more an attempt to have stock (and stay in business) when there are shortages. I don't really know the motivation, but I'm thinking this is how the stores plan to stay stocked. Not much difference from us stocking our pantries when prices are low(er). Just sayin'.ReplyDelete
Good point. I hadn't heard about them doing that until yesterday - so I have no idea. Both make sense.Delete
Yes, some people may think we are hoarders with our pantries, so yep, it could be either way!
Thanks for a different perspective.
I get pretty irritated when I read about people claiming some people are hoarders. I would like to know what is the difference between hoarding and stocking up. One of them is something you do and one of them is something your neighbor does???????Delete
I get you! In my opinion a hoarder is someone who goes over board collecting whatever, and then will not give it up or use it nor share it.Delete
A stocker prepares to provide for their family and uses what they have in such a fashion. They also help and share with others.
That is my thoughts
Anne, you got that one! I don't think my sister actually saw me as a hoarder, but I know she thought I'd gone off the deep end a few times. Then, a few years ago--just before SARS--she called me for prepping tips, LOL. Her son-in-law, who is a physician, had told her it would be wise to be prepared. Interesting...she did have extra food on hand (not a lot, but some) when Covid hit. I like to think I had a part in that.Delete
Now, what is the difference between hoarding and being prepared? I think (and this is only my opinion) being prepared is to have sufficient supplies to get you through an emergency, which could last months rather than days. Hoarding is when you go to the store and clearing the shelves during an emergency, especially when others need the same products.
Recently, a guy behind me in the checkout line made a crack when I bought 12 jars of peanut butter @ .99. Since there were at least 6 cases of PB stacked in the aisle beside the shelf display, there was clearly no shortage. I suggested he go back and buy himself 12 jars because I hadn't seen .99 PB in over a year and didn't expect to see it again anytime soon. In times of plenty, buying big isn't hoarding. It's just smart.
Great explanation mikemax!!!!Delete
That is a whole other side that I didn't touch on. If you need to survive for a while - good. If you know you are intentionally clearing shelves and being a glutton - bad.
Yes, I do know what the difference is. The point I was trying to make is that people who don't want to stock up call it "hoarding." Even if they buy a few extra for themselves.Delete
So right. It really aggravates me that stockers/preppers get a bad rap. I'd rather be safe than sorry - and people can call me whatever they want!!!!!!! LOLDelete
I guess those people who name call will figure it out some day!
Meant to say - a friend and I drove north out of the city last weekend - just for a drive in the country - and about 45 minutes north we drove past a huge site under construction - it was a Walmart warehouse and it was massive!ReplyDelete
Those places are huge! Their distribution centers are unbelievably mammoth. Pretty amazingDelete
I did not know that bit about it being put in clearance if there was just more than the shelf can hold. That's cray-cray! Two different prices for the same exact item (smh). I do like to shop the cast-offs bin for veggies or whatever with damaged packaging. I feel so smart.ReplyDelete
We were at PetSmart 2 days ago picking up our elderly doggy's dasequin (for joint health). I thought I'd shop local instead of going thru Amazon. But, when I compared the sales receipt with what I pay for the same item at amazon, PetSmart was $23 more for the same sized bag!!! 👀 I double and triple-checked cuz I just couldn't believe it. But, yeah...so, back it went and I got my $ back.
Are you still having rain?
That is what the gal at my Kroger told me. I always check the clearance first! I know - 2 prices at the same time. CrazyDelete
WOW that is a big difference in price. I don't blame you. I wonder if you could find an herb that would work?
Yep, still raining. Every day! I have a small lake out back around the raised garden. I went out a while ago to feed the cats and got caught in a downpour. Hung out in the greenhouse for a while with my babes!!
All good points! As for the brown sugar, I open the box and put the whole bag inside into a wide-mouth Ball canning jar and have soft brown sugar.ReplyDelete
Thanks. That is a great tip - thank you!Delete
Great post! I have been stocking up on things that I am sure are going to be going way up in price and also that will be in short supply due to all the awful weather events that we have been having. My heart just goes out to all the farmers who are watching their crops just burn up in the sun or in the wildfires in our area.ReplyDelete
good for you. Very wise move on your part.Delete
Yes, it is so very sad. Seems that some people just can't catch a break. I pray daily for our lands and people.
With you on checking out the ads and buying the loss leaders, if it's something I need. I've also become more open to shopping different stores, based on what's on sale, rather than shopping only at my preferred store. This came about shortly after a Chicago-based grocery chain was sold to Kroger and over about 3 months the prices sky-rocketed, staff was cut, morale plummeted, as did service. It was time to look at what my alternatives were, and I found several new favorites. And Aldi's dairy prices (and quality) cannot be beat!ReplyDelete
I used to be brand-loyal, but discovered that in our family's corn casserole, the store-brand actually worked better. Which got me to thinking ... if I'm mixing a product into a casserole, soup, or stew, does it really matter if the veggies are all uniform? So, my brand loyalty began to disappear for many things. In the process, I found that there are some items where I actually prefer the off-label over the big-name.
By happenchance (when scouting out other stores), I found out that one of my new favorites discounted their nearing "best by" and over-stock meats overnight on Saturday. If you shopped early Sunday, there was always a HUGE selection of highly reduced meats in their mark-down section of the meat case. Can you say FREEZER!!!! If you have a connection, maybe inquire about when they typically do mark-downs, and if they have a certain location in Meats or Dairy when they put these mark-downs -- one Meijer has a corner meat case they use for mark-downs; the other one just stickers them "Reduced" and puts them in the regular section, along with the other packages of the same kind of meat.
I'm stocking up also for what my family needs. This post is so encouraging to me!ReplyDelete
I am shopping for a chest freezer now. I have 2 fridges but the freezers in those fills up fast. I but not only for myself but also for my sons family. I gave always shopped smart (put son thru college with the savings) but he and his wife dont get it yet. Think they will have to go thru some kind of financial hardship to learn to shop sales and stock up when needed. Just this week shopped the loss leaders, got ground beef 2.67lb normally 4.00.got a watermelon for 3.00 and corn 5 for a dollar. also got chips my grandson loves, needed to buy 4 bags to get the deal but spoke to the manager and got the deal on 2. Never hurts to ask they can only say no.Need to find a good deal on the TP and stock up on that.ReplyDelete
got enough toothpaste, shampoo and conditioner to last a year. not high end stuff but gets the job done
Good for you. I think you are right - sometimes there are people that must learn the hard way. An event can wake some people up - and then are some who may never learn, sadly.Delete
You got some good deals.
It is fun to beat the system a little (I mean they get us all the time) - so we can play the game too!!!
Many times you can get the sales and deals (if not buying required amount) if you are a senior. Most often you need to ask - they aren't going to just volunteer that!
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