Seven tips to beat the rising food shopping bill

halfprice.pngA recent survey carried out by Organised Mum found that three-quarters of mums are spending at least £20 per week more on food, with 25% saying it’s at least £40 per week more.

When asked what measures families are taking to cut down weekly food bills, 59 per cent said they are taking greater care when planning meals and are generally trying to buy less, a further 22 per cent said they were buying the same products but have switched to cheaper own-brand versions and 19 per cent have even ditched their favourite supermarket for a cheaper alternative.

Sarah Sadler at Organised Mum commented, “More now than ever, families need to ensure they are getting value for money from what they spend on food each week, but focusing on what you buy is just as important as not overspending in the first place. Our survey has already revealed that people are making changes to the way they shop and that they are prepared to look at different ways of making cut backs if needed. A little bit of good old fashioned organisation and planning can also do wonders for your bank balance”.”

Here are Sarah’s seven tips for saving money on food:

1. Eggs

Buy your free range eggs from local farms rather than the supermarket at around 75p for a dozen rather than £1.50 for half a dozen. Eggs are also very versatile and can make a great evening meal for the family.

2. Meat

Buy your meat from the supermarket “reduced” cabinets and freeze it for use at a later date.

3. Bread

Buy a bread making machine where you can make a loaf of bread for around 52p compared with a premium brand at around £1.20 per loaf. You get to wake up to the smell of freshly baked bread and it won’t have anywhere near as many preservatives in it, which can only be a good thing.

4. Lunch

Change your lunch habits. Make your sandwiches at home in the morning before you leave for work, or do one single shop at the supermarket on a Monday morning and buy everything you need for your lunch that week. You will still save pounds over buying pre-packed sandwiches every day.

5. Special Offers

Look out for special offers at your supermarket, stock up on good deals – but don’t be tempted to overspend on something that you didn’t need. Stick to your list and only indulge in special offers if you need or will need the item anyway.

6. Meal Planning

Take the time to sit down and make a weekly meal plan making sure that you include recipes that will use any food stuffs that are nearing their use-by-date. When making the list ensure that you have considered the week’s activities. For example, one of your children may be out at a sleepover and won’t require dinner that night. You can then use the meal plan to make a shopping list that makes sure you only buy the food you will need for that week’s meals.

7. Hunger

Finally, the golden rules of shopping: don’t shop when you are hungry. Inevitably, if you food shop whilst hungry you are more likely to be tempted by the mouth watering delicacies on show.

These are by no means exhaustive ideas. What are your money-saving tips? How is your family being affected by the “credit crunch”? Share in the comments below.