Topic 2 Create a grocery list and tips for supermarket savings

Before shopping for food, families can follow these recommended food conservation times which offer the best flavors, maximize nutritional value, and optimize food safety.

Several organizations with well-recognized international prestige in the field of Nutrition and Dietetics, such as the British Dietetic Association or the Academic of Nutrition and Dietetics, recommend following these easy tips when going shopping for food to help you spend less at the grocery store.

  • Make a meal plan, particularly for your main meals, and a shopping list and stick to the food you already have at home to avoid buying unnecessary things. Don’t overbuy to avoid food waste
  • Shop for groceries when you are relaxed during the week. If it’s possible, you should shop after you have eaten and avoid shopping on an empty stomach. This can lead to impulse purchases which may affect what and how much you buy.
  • Avoid peak hours at grocery stores, which are typically from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays, and afternoons during the weekend
  • Organize your grocery list into sections according to the layout of the supermarket and based on in-season local produce. This cuts down time and the number of times you cross through the aisle
  • Check for supermarket offers and weekly store circulars for sales and coupons for items you regularly purchase. Also, try company websites and apps for coupons. Be aware that special offers are not always the cheapest option and sometimes sale prices are only valid with the loyalty card
  • Avoid purchasing more than you need or can store. Use within the specified date or freeze for later
  • Value brands often taste just as good for a lower price
  • Local food markets offer locally sourced produce which usually offer a good value for money
  • Cheaper products are not always at eye level or clearly positioned. Check out all the shelves (including top and bottom)
  • Larger supermarkets offer a better range of produce, often at a cheaper cost, so do your main shop there if you can
  • Stock up on staple foods when they go on sale. Browse your grocery aisles for sale items and stock up on foods you can store in the pantry and freezer. Load your cart with non-perishable foods such as canned and bottled goods; dried beans and peas; whole-grain pastas, crackers and cereals; brown rice; tomato sauces and nut butters.
  • Buying frozen fruits and vegetables can be a more economical option
  • To reduce food waste, you can freeze foods that are just about to go bad. For example, frozen bananas can make delicious healthy “ice-cream” recipes

QUESTION: Myth: Buying everything in bulk is better.   A) True     B) False

Even though this practice can lower the price by unit, buying in bulk is not always the cheapest option.  Consumers may shop extra food and the overall spending is higher than the one of just buying what you need for the week or month. Also, in general, foods that are sold in bulks are usually processed and high in sugars and salt.

QUESTION: Is it good practice to go grocery shopping without the kids? A) Yes  B)No

Most parents think that going to the supermarket with their kids will lead to them asking for unnecessary items like candy and cookies. However, the visit to grocery store could be an excellent opportunity for kids to get involved in the foods they eat and learn basic meal recipes. Besides, if parents teach the kids to choose healthier food options, it is more likely that they will eat them, lowering money and food waste. A useful simple advice to the parents may be to give the kids a healthy snack before, which can help to avoid those impulse buys.

QUESTION: How to identify if products are healthy for the kids?

Food products can be marketed to seem like they are healthy options, specially within the children population. It is important to identify foods that are high in added sugars.

Source: Pexels

Source: Pexels